Collect. Czech. Chem. Commun. 1999, 64, 1348-1356

Conditions Resulting in Formation of Properly Assembled Retroviral Capsids within Inclusion Bodies of Escherichia coli

Michaela Rumlová-Klikováa, Iva Pichováa, Eric Hunterb and Tomáš Rumlc,*

a Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry, Academy of Sciences, Flemingovo nám. 2, 166 10 Prague 6, Czech Republic
b Department of Microbiology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, Alabama 35294, U.S.A.
c Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology, Prague Institute of Chemical Technology, 166 28 Prague 6, Czech Republic


It has been generally accepted that inclusion bodies (IBs) formed in Escherichia coli consist of non-biologically active aggregated proteins, which are stabilized by non-productive interactions. We show here that bacterial expression of a retroviral capsid polyprotein results in formation of insoluble IBs that contain fully assembled viral particles connected with amorphous material. The efficiency of IBs formation and capsid assembly was not significantly affected by changes in induction temperature, pH of cultivation medium or the level of expression.

Keywords: Native proteins; Bacterial expression; Inclusion body; Retroviral capsid assembly; Retroviruses.