Syntaxin 5-dependent retrograde transport to the trans-golgi network is required for adeno-associated virus transduction

Mathieu E. Nonnenmacher, Jean Christophe Cintrat, Daniel Gillet, Thomas Weber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Scopus citations


Intracellular transport of recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) is still incompletely understood. In particular, the trafficking steps preceding the release of incoming AAV particles from the endosomal system into the cytoplasm, allowing subsequent nuclear import and the initiation of gene expression, remain to be elucidated fully. Others and we previously showed that a significant proportion of viral particles are transported to the Golgi apparatus and that Golgi apparatus disruption caused by the drug brefeldin A efficiently blocks AAV serotype 2 (AAV2) transduction. However, because brefeldin A is known to exert pleiotropic effects on the entire endosomal system, the functional relevance of transport to the Golgi apparatus for AAV transduction remains to be established definitively. Here, we show that AAV2 trafficking toward the trans-Golgi network (TGN) and the Golgi apparatus correlates with transduction efficiency and relies on a nonclassical retrograde transport pathway that is independent of the retromer complex, late endosomes, and recycling endosomes. AAV2 transduction is unaffected by the knockdown of syntaxins 6 and 16, which are two major effectors in the retrograde transport of both exogenous and endogenous cargo. On the other hand, inhibition of syntaxin 5 function by small interfering RNA silencing or treatment with cyclized Retro-2 strongly decreases AAV2 transduction and transport to the Golgi apparatus. This inhibition of transduction is observed with several AAV serotypes and a number of primary and immortalized cells. Together, our data strongly suggest that syntaxin 5-mediated retrograde transport to the Golgi apparatus is a broadly conserved feature of AAV trafficking that appears to be independent of the identity of the receptors used for viral attachment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1673-1687
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Virology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2015


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