Affinity thresholds for membrane fusion triggering by viral glycoproteins

Kosei Hasegawa, Chunling Hu, Takafumi Nakamura, James D. Marks, Stephen J. Russell, Kah Whye Peng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Enveloped viruses trigger membrane fusion to gain entry into cells. The receptor affinities of their attachment proteins vary greatly, from 10 -4 M to 10-9 M, but the significance of this is unknown. Using six retargeted measles viruses that bind to Her-2/neu with a 5-log range in affinity, we show that receptor affinity has little impact on viral attachment but is nevertheless a key determinant of infectivity and intercellular fusion. For a given cell surface receptor density, there is an affinity threshold above which cell-cell fusion proceeds efficiently. Suprathreshold affinities do not further enhance the efficiency of membrane fusion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)13149-13157
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number23
StatePublished - Dec 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Insect Science
  • Virology


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