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Modelling HA protein-mediated interaction between an influenza virus and a healthy cell: pre-fusion membrane deformation.

Authors
  • Vaidya, Naveen K
  • Huang, Huaxiong
  • Takagi, Shu
Type
Published Article
Journal
Mathematical medicine and biology : a journal of the IMA
Publication Date
Sep 01, 2007
Volume
24
Issue
3
Pages
251–270
Identifiers
PMID: 17383960
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

We present a mathematical model for pre-fusion interaction between an influenza virus and a healthy cell. Our model describes the role played by hemagglutinin (HA) protein clusters in bringing the viral membrane into close contact with the host cell membrane as a first step of the fusion process between the two membranes. The viral membrane is modelled as a lipid bilayer with bending rigidity. Using the calculus of variations, we compute the deformation of the viral membrane under the influence of HA protein clusters. Our numerical results support the hypothesis of dimple formation in the fusion site proposed in the literature. The asymmetric nature of the protein molecules due to various reasons such as tilting is the primary cause for the dimple formation. We discuss the effects of spontaneous curvature, the protein cluster radius, fusion-site size and the bending moment exerted by the protein cluster. We also examine the effects of membrane tension and the presence of a host cell on the dimple shape. Our results support previous experimental observations.

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