Human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) is a common human pathogen that can persist for the lifetime of an infected individual because of its ability to evade immune response. To study how the virus achieves this, Weekes et al. used quantitative temporal viromics, involving a multiplexed tandem-mass-tag–based mass spectrometry method for following viral and host-cell protein production over time. The researchers profiled cytoplasmic proteins from whole-cell lysates as well as plasma-membrane proteins in HCMV-infected fibroblasts over a three-day time course. The proteomic data reveal the dynamics of ∼80% of viral proteins and over 8,000 host proteins during infection, identifying host factors that may play a role in viral defense and that, as candidate targets of HCMV, may permit immune evasion.
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Proteome changes upon infection. Nat Methods 11, 791 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1038/nmeth.3048