Yeast genome-wide screen reveals dissimilar sets of host genes affecting replication of RNA viruses

Tadas Panavas, Elena Serviene, Jeremy Brasher, Peter D. Nagy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

194 Scopus citations


Viruses are devastating pathogens of humans, animals, and plants. To further our understanding of how viruses use the resources of infected cells, we systematically tested the yeast single-gene-knockout library for the effect of each host gene on the replication of tomato bushy stunt virus (TBSV), a positive-strand RNA virus of plants. The genome-wide screen identified 96 host genes whose absence either reduced or increased the accumulation of the TBSV replicon. The identified genes are involved in the metabolism of nucleic acids, lipids, proteins, and other compounds and in protein targeting/transport. Comparison with published genome-wide screens reveals that the replication of TBSV and brome mosaic virus (BMV), which belongs to a different supergroup among plus-strand RNA viruses, is affected by vastly different yeast genes. Moreover, a set of yeast genes involved in vacuolar targeting of proteins and vesicle-mediated transport both affected replication of the TBSV replicon and enhanced the cytotoxicity of the Parkinson's disease-related α-synuclein when this protein was expressed in yeast. In addition, a set of host genes involved in ubiquitin-dependent protein catabolism affected both TBSV replication and the cytotoxicity of a mutant huntingtin protein, a candidate agent in Huntington's disease. This finding suggests that virus infection and disease-causing proteins might use or alter similar host pathways and may suggest connections between chronic diseases and prior virus infection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7326-7331
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number20
StatePublished - May 17 2005


  • Host factors
  • Plus-stranded RNA virus
  • Tomato bushy stunt tombusvirus
  • Virus replication
  • Yeast-knockout strains

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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