Local action with global impact: Highly similar infection patterns of human viruses and bacteriophages

Rachelle Mariano, Sawsan Khuri, Peter Uetz, Stefan Wuchty

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The investigation of host-pathogen interaction interfaces and their constituent factors is crucial for our understanding of an organism's pathogenesis. Here, we explored the interactomes of HIV, hepatitis C virus, influenza A virus, human papillomavirus, herpes simplex virus, and vaccinia virus in a human host by analyzing the combined sets of virus targets and human genes that are required for viral infection. We also considered targets and required genes of bacteriophages lambda and T7 infection in Escherichia coli. We found that targeted proteins and their immediate network neighbors significantly pool with proteins required for infection and essential for cell growth, forming large connected components in both the human and E. coli protein interaction networks. The impact of both viruses and phages on their protein targets appears to extend to their network neighbors, as these are enriched with topologically central proteins that have a significant disruptive topological effect and connect different protein complexes. Moreover, viral and phage targets and network neighbors are enriched with transcription factors, methylases, and acetylases in human viruses, while such interactions are much less prominent in bacteriophages.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere00030-15
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • Bacteriophages
  • Host-pathogen interactions
  • Protein interactions
  • Viruses

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Physiology
  • Biochemistry
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Computer Science Applications


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