Our group is interested in human and animal coronaviruses. These viruses cause respiratory and gastrointestinal diseases. In rare instances that depend on the infecting coronavirus strain, the age and the immune competence of the infected individual, disease can be life-threatening. The severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) epidemic of 2003 was caused by a coronavirus. Coronaviruses are known for their ability to transfer from infected animals to humans. Understanding this so-called “xenotropism” requires further knowledge of steps in the infection process. We use coronaviruses to dissect the related steps of virus assembly and virus entry. Our current efforts focus on the ways that proteins extending from virus particles (the “spike” proteins forming the characteristic “corona”) operate to mediate cell entry.
Hussain, S. and Gallagher, T. (2010) SARS-coronavirus protein 6 conformations required to impede protein import into the nucleus. Virus Research, In press: DOI: 10.1016/j.virusres.2010.08.017
Guo, Y., Tisoncik, J., McReynolds, S., Farzan, M., Prabhakar, B., Gallagher, T. Rong, L. and Caffrey, M. (2009) Identification of a new region of SARS-CoV S protein critical for viral entry. J. Mol. Biol. 394: 600-605.
Shulla, A. and Gallagher, T. (2009) Role of spike protein endodomains in regulating coronavirus entry. J. Biol. Chem. 294: 32725-32734.
Hussain S, Perlman S, Gallagher TM. 2008. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus protein 6 accelerates murine hepatitis virus infections by more than one mechanism. J. Virol. 82(14):7212-22.
Boscarino, J. A., Logan, H. L., Lacny, J. J., and Gallagher, T. M. (2008) Envelope protein palmitoylations are crucial for murine coronavirus assembly. J. Virol. 82: 2989-2999.