ABSTRACT As the world is closely watching the current 2009 H1N1 pandemic unfold, there is a great interest and need in understanding its origin, genetic structures, virulence, and pathogenicity. The two surface proteins, hemagglutinin (HA) and neuraminidase (NA), of the influenza virus have been the focus of most flu research due to their crucial biological functions. In our previous study on 2009 H1N1, three aspects of NA were investigated: the mutations and co-mutations, the stalk motifs, and the phylogenetic analysis. In this study, we turned our attention to HA and the interaction between HA and NA. The 118 mutations of 2009 H1N1 HA were found and mapped to the 3D homology model of H1, and the mutations on the five epitope regions on H1 were identified. This information is essential for developing new drugs and vaccine. The distinct response patterns of HA to the changes of NA stalk motifs were discovered, illustrating the functional dependence between HA and NA. With help from our previous results, two co-mutation networks were uncovered, one in HA and one in NA, where each mutation in one network co-mutates with the mutations in the other network across the two proteins HA and NA. These two networks residing in HA and NA separately may provide a functional linkage between the mutations that can impact the drug binding sites in NA and those that can affect the host immune response or vaccine efficacy in HA. Our findings demonstrated the value of conducting timely analysis on the 2009 H1N1 virus and of the integrated approach to studying both surface proteins HA and NA together to reveal their interdependence, which could not be accomplished by studying them individually.
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nullHu, W. (2010) The interaction between the 2009 H1N1 influenza A hemagglutinin and neuraminidase: mutations, co-mutations, and the NA stalk motifs. Journal of Biomedical Science and Engineering, 3, 1-12. doi: 10.4236/jbise.2010.31001.
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