Tegument assembly, secondary envelopment and exocytosis

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2 Scopus citations


Alphaherpesvirus tegument assembly, secondary envelopment, and exocytosis processes are understood in broad strokes, but many of the individual steps in this pathway, and their molecular and cell biological details, remain unclear. Viral tegument and membrane proteins form an extensive and robust protein interaction network, such that essentially any structural protein can be deleted, yet particles are still assembled, enveloped, and released from infected cells. We conceptually divide the tegument proteins into three groups: conserved inner and outer teguments that participate in nucleocapsid and membrane contacts, respectively; and "middle" tegument proteins, consisting of some of the most abundant tegument proteins that serve as central hubs in the protein interaction network, yet which are unique to the alphaherpesviruses. We then discuss secondary envelopment, reviewing the tegument-membrane contacts and cellular factors that drive this process. We place this viral process in the context of cell biological processes, including the endocytic pathway, ESCRT machinery, autophagy, secretory pathway, intracellular transport, and exocytosis mechanisms. Finally, we speculate about potential relationships between cellular defenses against oligomerizing or aggregating membrane proteins and the envelopment and egress of viruses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)551-604
Number of pages54
JournalCurrent Issues in Molecular Biology
StatePublished - 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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