Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

The L protein of mononegaviruses harbours all catalytic activities for genome replication and transcription. It contains six conserved domains (CR-I to -VI; Fig. 1a). CR-III has been linked to polymerase and polyadenylation activity, CR-V to mRNA capping and CR-VI to cap methylation. However, how these activities are choreographed is poorly understood. Here we present the 2.2-Å X-ray structure and activities of CR-VI+, a portion of human Metapneumovirus L consisting of CR-VI and the poorly conserved region at its C terminus, the +domain. The CR-VI domain has a methyltransferase fold, which besides the typical S-adenosylmethionine-binding site ((SAM)P) also contains a novel pocket ((NS)P) that can accommodate a nucleoside. CR-VI lacks an obvious cap-binding site, and the (SAM)P-adjoining site holding the nucleotides undergoing methylation ((SUB)P) is unusually narrow because of the overhanging +domain. CR-VI+ sequentially methylates caps at their 2'O and N7 positions, and also displays nucleotide triphosphatase activity.

Original publication




Journal article


Nat Commun

Publication Date





Animals, Binding Sites, Chromatography, Thin Layer, Crystallization, Crystallography, X-Ray, Metapneumovirus, Methylation, Mononegavirales, Protein Structure, Tertiary, RNA, RNA Caps, RNA Replicase, S-Adenosylmethionine, Sf9 Cells, Spodoptera, Viral Proteins