Vaccinia virus complement control protein (VCP) was one of the first viral molecules demonstrated to have a role in blocking complement and hence in the evasion of host defense. Structurally it is very similar to the human C4b-BP and the other members of complement control protein. Functionally it is most similar to the CR1 protein. VCP blocks both major pathways of complement activation. The crystal structure of VCP was determined a little over a year ago and it is the only known structure of an intact and complete complement control protein. In addition to binding complement, VCP also binds to heparin. These two binding abilities can take place simultaneously and contribute to its many function and to its potential use in several inflammatory diseases, e.g. Alzheimer’s disease (AD), CNS injury, xenotransplantation, etc. making it a truly fascinating molecule and potential drug.
Volume 45, 2020
Continuous Article Publishing mode
Click here for Editorial Note on CAP Mode