Evolution of cyclophilin A and TRIMCyp retrotransposition in New World primates.
Host cell factors modulate retroviral infections. Among those, cyclophilin A (CypA) promotes virus infectivity by facilitating virus uncoating or capsid unfolding or by preventing retroviral capsid interaction with cellular restriction factors. In Aotus species, a retrotransposed copy of CypA inserted into the tripartite motif 5 (TRIM5) gene encodes a fusion protein which may block human immunodeficiency virus type 1 by targeting the incoming virus to ubiquitin-ligated degradation or by interfering with normal uncoating of the incoming particle, rendering those monkeys resistant to infection. In this study, we have extensively analyzed representative specimens from all New World primate genera and shown that the retrotransposed CypA copy is only present in Aotus. We have shown that this inserted copy diverged from its original counterpart and that this occurred prior to Aotus radiation, although no positive selection was observed. Finally, our data underscores the need for a precise taxonomic identification of primate species used as models for retroviral infections and novel antiviral approaches.