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Zika virus (ZIKV) infection leads to microcephaly in newborns. Flaviviruses are known to secrete NS1 protein extracellularly and its concentration in serum directly co-relate to disease severity. The presence of ZIKV-NS1 near the brain microvascular endothelial cells (BMVECs) affects blood-brain-barrier, which is composed of tight junctions (TJs) and adherens junctions (AJs). Viruses utilize different strategies to circumvent this barrier to enter in brain. The present study demonstrated the mechanism of junctional integrity disruption in BMVECs by ZIKV-NS1 protein exposure. The Transendothelial Electrical Resistance and sodium fluorescein migration assays revealed the endothelial barrier disruption in BMVECs exposed to ZIKV-NS1 at different time (12hr and 24hr) and doses (500 ng/mL, 1000 ng/mL and 1500 ng/mL). The exposure of ZIKV-NS1 on BMVECs led to the phosphorylation of AJs and suppression of TJs through secreted ZIKV-NS1 in a bystander fashion. The activation of NADPH dependent reactive oxygen species activity and redox sensitive tyrosine kinase further increased the phosphorylation of AJs. The reduced expression of the phosphatase led to the increased phosphorylation of the AJs. The treatment with Diphenyleneiodonium chloride rescued the phosphatase and TJs expression and suppressed the expression of kinase and AJs in BMVECs exposed to ZIKV-NS1. Copyright © 2020 Elsevier B.V. and Société Française de Biochimie et Biologie Moléculaire (SFBBM). All rights reserved.


Meghana Rastogi, Sunit K Singh. Zika virus NS1 affects the junctional integrity of human brain microvascular endothelial cells. Biochimie. 2020 Sep;176:52-61

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PMID: 32640279

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