Influenza A virus causes seasonal epidemics, sporadic pandemics and is a significant global health burden. Influenza virus is an enveloped virus that contains a segmented negative strand RNA genome. Assembly and budding of progeny influenza virions is a complex, multi-step process that occurs in lipid raft domains on the apical membrane of infected cells. This clustering of HA and NA may cause influenza m2 viral budding pdf deformation of the membrane and the initiation of the virus budding event.
M1 is then thought to bind to the cytoplasmic tails of HA and NA where it can then polymerize and form the interior structure of the emerging virion. M1, bound to the cytoplasmic tails of HA and NA, additionally serves as a docking site for the recruitment of the viral RNPs and may mediate the recruitment of M2 to the site of virus budding. M2 initially stabilizes the site of budding, possibly enabling the polymerization of the matrix protein and the formation of filamentous virions. Subsequently, M2 is able to alter membrane curvature at the neck of the budding virus, causing membrane scission and the release of the progeny virion. This review investigates the latest research on influenza virus budding in an attempt to provide a step-by-step analysis of the assembly and budding processes for influenza viruses. Current vaccines have variable effectiveness, and, in particular during a pandemic outbreak, they are probably not available in the amounts needed to protect the world population. Therefore we need effective small molecule drugs to combat an IV infection and that can be produced, in case of pandemic, rapidly and in large quantities.
Unfortunately, natural occurring IV becomes more and more resistant to current anti-IV drugs. And thus, there is an urgent need for development of alternative agents with new mechanisms of action. This review provides an overview of the pharmacology and effectiveness of new anti-IV agents, focusing on inhibition mechanisms directed against virus-host interactions. This is a featured article.