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Title page for ETD etd-11292012-104010

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Cox, Reagan Josephine Greene
Author's Email Address reagan.j.cox@vanderbilt.edu
URN etd-11292012-104010
Title Breaking in: human metapneumovirus fusion and entry
Degree PhD
Department Microbiology and Immunology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Christopher Aiken Committee Chair
Borden Lacy Committee Member
Earl Ruley Committee Member
John Williams Committee Member
Roy Zent Committee Member
  • integrin
  • human metapneumovirus
  • paramyxovirus
  • virus fusion
  • virus entry
Date of Defense 2012-11-02
Availability unrestricted
This project is concerned with how the recently discovered paramyxovirus, human metapneumovirus (HMPV), interacts with host cells to initiate entry. In this dissertation I explore whether the HMPV fusion protein interacts with cellular proteins during virus attachment and whether receptor binding is sufficient to initiate virus-mediated fusion at the cell surface. In this research I developed novel techniques to study HMPV fusion and entry. I learned that the HMPV fusion protein uses RGD-binding integrins to mediate attachment and virus entry, binding to integrins is not sufficient to trigger HMPV fusion, and HMPV fuses with intracellular membranes instead of at the cell surface. In sum, I have elucidated mechanisms that HMPV utilizes to mediate virus entry, which are unique from the entry mechanism used by other paramyxoviruses.
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