Tianjin Institute of Industrial Biotechnology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Tianjin 300308, China; Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China. Electronic address: [Email]
Arthritogenic alphaviruses, such as Chikungunya virus (CHIKV), cause severe and debilitating rheumatic diseases worldwide, resulting in severe morbidity and economic costs. Recently, MXRA8 was reported as an entry receptor. Here, we present the crystal structures of the mouse MXRA8, human MXRA8 in complex with the CHIKV E protein, and the cryo-electron microscopy structure of human MXRA8 and CHIKV virus-like particle. MXRA8 has two Ig-like domains with unique structural topologies. This receptor binds in the "canyon" between two protomers of the E spike on the surface of the virion. The atomic details at the interface between the two binding entities reveal that both the two domains and the hinge region of MXRA8 are involved in interaction with CHIKV E1-E2 residues from two protomers. Notably, the stalk region of MXRA8 is critical for CHIKV virus entry. This finding provides important information regarding the development of therapeutic countermeasures against those arthritogenic alphaviruses.