Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Microbiology and Immunology


Dr. Joe Mymryk

Second Advisor

Dr. Greg Dekaban


Mitochondria perform multiple essential roles in mammalian cells, including the regulation of apoptosis, energy production, and mediation of antiviral responses. Thus, modulating mitochondrial activity is an important mechanism for virus survival in host cells. While the Human Cytomegalovirus (CMV) protein viral mitochondrion-localized inhibitor of apoptosis (vMIA) acts to inhibit apoptosis, the viral mediators of other effects on mitochondria during infection are unknown. We hypothesize that CMV codes for additional mitochondrially localized proteins whose functions may contribute to the modulation of mitochondrial activities. We initially conducted an in si/ico screen to identify CMV proteins that contain a putative mitochondrial localization sequence (MLS). Two candidate proteins, UL19 and UL148, were found to localize to mitochondria through immunofluorescence staining analyses. To gain insight in the potential functions of UL19, a yeast two hybrid screen of a human leukocyte cDNA library was performed to identify the binding partners of each protein. Results suggest that UL19 may interact with the gamma interferon inducible lysosomal thiol reductase enzyme.



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