RNA interference directed to CDK2 inhibits HIV-1 transcription

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We previously reported that cell cycle-dependent kinase 2 (CDK2) is required for human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) Tat-dependent transcription in vitro. In the present study, CDK2-specific RNA interference in cultured HEK293T cells inhibited CDK2 expression and Tat-induced HIV-1 transcription from non-integrated HIV-1 promoter but not basal HIV-1 transcription or transcription from CMV or β-actin promoters. Also, CDK2-specific RNA interference inhibited Tat-induced transcription from the integrated HIV-1 promoter in HeLa-CD4-LTR-β-gal cells and potently blocked TNFα-induced HIV-1 viral replication in OM10.1 cells. CDK2-specific RNA interference did not have an effect on cell cycle progression, but it augmented TNFα-induced apoptosis of OM10.1 cells. Our results indicate that CDK2 participates in Tat-mediated HIV-1 transcription and may serve as a potential therapeutic target. © 2005 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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