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hFUT1-based live cell assay to profile α1-2-fucosides enhanced influenza A virus infection

By Senlian Hong, Geramie Grande, Chenhua Yu, Digantkumar G. Chapla, Natalie Reigh, Yi Yang, Ken Izumori, Kelley W. Moremen, Jia Xie, Peng Wu

Posted 25 Nov 2019
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/854166 (published DOI: 10.1021/acschembio.9b00869)

Host cell-surface glycans play critical roles in influenza A virus (IAV) infection ranging from modulation of IAV attachment to membrane fusion and host tropism. Approaches for quick and sensitive profiling of the viral avidity towards a specific type of host-cell glycan can contribute to the understanding of tropism switching among different strains of IAV. In this study, we developed a method based on chemoenzymatic glycan engineering to investigate the possible involvement of α1-2-fucosides in IAV infections. Using a truncated human fucosyltransferase 1 (hFuT1), we were able to create α1-2-linked fucosides in situ on the host cell surface to assess their influence on the host cell binding to IAV hemagglutinin and the susceptibility of host cells toward IAV induced killing. We discovered that the newly added α1-2-fucosides on host cells enhanced the infection of several human pandemic IVA subtypes. These findings suggest that glycan epitopes other than sialic aicds should be taken into consideration for assessing the human pandemic risk of this viral pathogen.

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