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Molecular characterization of a Tax-2C protein variant identified in Brazilian subjects infected by HTLV-2C

Although the etiologic difference in pathogenic properties of HTLV-1 and HTLV-2 still remains unclear, it has been suggested that it could be attributed to the differential structure and activities of their transactivating Tax proteins. Tax-1 and Tax-2, although having 85% amino acid (aa) similarity, present phenotypic differences consistent with a more robust transformation capacity of Tax-1. Interestingly, the HTLV-2C Brazilian variant present in Amerindians and in IDU from urban areas is genotypically close to HTLV-2A but Tax-2C possesses an additional 25aa in the C-terminal region similar to that of Tax-2B. We have already demonstrated that Tax-1 and Tax-2B have several common domains, but present differential cellular distribution. To add some information concerning the structure and site domains present in Tax-2C we conducted the present study. We have obtained the Tax-2C sequence from 25 different HTLV-2C subjects and analyzed the aminoacid homology between Tax-2B and Tax-2C variants. We found that they differ for amino acidic substitutions in eleven different positions that may affect cellular localization or post-translational modification. Studies on phenotypic properties and cellular localization of Tax-2C are in progress. Support: MCT/CNPq # 303545/2012-7, CAPES, IAL # 49D/2010), Brazil.

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Correspondence to Adele Caterino-de-Araujo.

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This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

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Caterino-de-Araujo, A., Magri, M.C., Bertazzoni, U. et al. Molecular characterization of a Tax-2C protein variant identified in Brazilian subjects infected by HTLV-2C. Retrovirology 11 (Suppl 1), P110 (2014).

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