Human cells incubated with human interferon become more resistant to vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) than to Semliki Forest virus (SFV); monkey cells treated with monkey interferon become more resistant to SFV than to VSV. However, monkey cells incubated with human interferon developed relative antiviral activity identical to that induced by homologous interferon, and human cells developed characteristic human interferon-induced relative antiviral activity when exposed to monkey interferon. Therefore, cross-reacting interferons induce the relative antiviral activity characteristic of the interferon-treated cell rather than the cell of the interferon's origin. This relationship supports the hypothesis that interferon is not itself antiviral but rather induces cells to develop their own antiviral activity.
Requirements for the physical presence of the cell's nucleus for the establishment and maintenance of the interferon-induced antiviral state were investigated. Enucleated chicken embryo fibroblasts were obtained by cytochalasin B treatment during centrifugation. The inhibition of vaccinia virus cytoplasmic DNA synthesis, monitored by autoradiography, was used to measure the antiviral activity resulting from interferon treatment. The antiviral state is not established in cells treated with interferon after removal of their nuclei. On the other hand, cells first treated with interferon for 6 or 12 h and then enucleated express the antiviral state. Furthermore, the antiviral state is maintained in enucleated cells for 16 h after enucleation. The antiviral state appears to be more stable in enucleates than in the residual nucleated cells found in the same cultures. Single cells of antiviral populations are found to be either fully permissive or fully restrictive to vaccinia DNA synthesis. The effect of an increasing intracellular multiplicity of infectious virus is to overcome the antiviral cell's block against viral DNA synthesis.
Adenine arabinoside and human interferon are currently being evaluated in clinical trials against herpes- and poxvirus infections. Interferon production is also a normal antiviral response. It is therefore important to examine the combined actions of interferon and antiviral arabinosides for possible synergy or antagonism. We have examined the antiviral activities of human fibroblast interferon, adenine arabinoside, hypoxanthine arabinoside, and adenine arabinoside 5′-monophosphate individually, using plaque inhibition of vaccinia and herpes simplex type 2 viruses in human skin fibroblast cultures. By combining doses of interferon and arabinosides that, acting alone, give intermediate degrees of plaque inhibition, we were able to compare the combined antiviral activity with that calculated from the activity of each inhibitor alone, assuming that the activities are statistically independent. Our results show that the plaque-inhibitory activities of interferon and the arabinosides tested are statistically independent. The results also show that the arabinosides do not destabilize the antiviral state previously induced by interferon, and that interferon pretreatment does not interfere with subsequent arabinoside action in infected cells. We have also found that arabinosides do not affect the induction of interferon synthesis by either Newcastle disease virus or double-stranded ribonucleic acid, and are not themselves interferon inducers.
The sensitivity of highly purified human fibroblast interferon and partially purified human leukocyte interferon to several proteolytic and glycolytic enzymes was determined with respect to antiviral activity, isoelectric point, molecular weight, and thermal stability. Leucine aminopeptidase altered the distribution of isoelectric points for both interferons but produced little change in molecular weights; this enzyme somewhat reduced the activity of only leukocyte interferon. Treatment of fibroblast interferon with carboxypeptidases A and B did not greatly decrease antiviral activity, but it did slightly reduce the molecular weight of the interferon and substantially altered the distribution of isoelectric point values; similar treatment of leukocyte interferon caused some loss in activity, especially of the 17,000-molecular-weight species. Both interferons were inactivated rapidly by treatment with the endoproteases trypsin, pepsin, bromelain, and subtilisin. Chymotrypsin shifted the isoelectric points of both interferons, but only leukocyte interferon was significantly inactivated. Treatment with neuraminidase and beta-galactosidase changed the isoelectric point distribution but did not affect the activity or thermal stability of either interferon; such a treatment reduced the molecular weight of fibroblast interferon and the size heterogeneity of leukocyte interferon. Treatment with neuraminidase and then leucine aminopeptidase greatly reduced the activity of both interferons, especially leukocyte interferon. The data indicate that biologically active forms of fibroblast and leukocyte interferons can be distinguished by their relative sensitivity to certain proteases.
Nonsensitized human leukocytes cocultured with various xenogeneic epithelioid and fibroblastic cells produced human leukocyte interferon and shortly thereafter transferred antiviral activity to the xenogeneic cells. Antiviral activity in the cocultured xenogeneic cells was not due to cell-mediated cytotoxicity as measured by specific 51Cr release and staining with vital dyes. The transfer of antiviral activity from leukocytes to xenogeneic cells was blocked by rabbit antiserum to human leukocyte interferon. Transferred viral resistance failed to develop in actinomycin D-treated xenogeneic cells, even though these cells induced human leukocyte interferon. Based on these findings, it appears that interferon made in the cocultures acts on the leukocytes to effect the transfer of interferon-induced viral resistance to the xenogenic cells, possibly by transmission of an inducer for the antiviral state. These studies strongly suggest a new and efficient host defense against virus infection which does not require killing of noninfected or recently infected cells.
Virus infection induces a rapid cellular response in cells characterized by the induction of interferon. While interferon itself does not induce an antiviral response, it activates a number of interferon-stimulated genes that collectively function to inhibit virus replication and spread. Previously, we and others reported that herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) induces an interferon -independent antiviral response in the absence of virus replication. Here, we report that the HSV-1 proteins ICP0 and vhs function in concert to disable the host antiviral response. In particular, we show that ICP0 blocks interferon regulatory factor IRF3- and IRF7-mediated activation of interferon-stimulated genes and that the RING finger domain of ICP0 is essential for this activity. Furthermore, we demonstrate that HSV-1 modifies the IRF3 pathway in a manner different from that of the small RNA viruses most commonly studied.
We showed previously that the mouse fibroblastoid cell line Ltk-aprt- is resistant to the antiviral effects of beta interferon. This lack of response reflects a partial sensitivity to the interferon that is accompanied by a failure to activate expression of several interferon-regulated genes, although certain other genes respond in a normal manner. We show here that Ltk-aprt- cells were also unable to establish an antiviral state and to activate expression of 2,5-oligo(A) synthetase when treated with gamma interferon. Strikingly, however, treatment with a combination of beta interferon and gamma interferon provided complete protection against viral replication. Although the cells were completely insensitive to up to 250 U of the interferons per ml added singly, essentially complete protection from viral cytopathic effects was achieved when as little as 10 U of each of the interferons per ml were combined. Expression of 2,5-oligo(A) synthetase was also sensitive to this synergistic effect. Activation of an antiviral state could also be achieved by sequential treatment, first with gamma interferon and then with beta interferon. Partial protection against viral replication could be achieved by pretreatment with gamma interferon for as little as 1 h before incubation with beta interferon and could be blocked by the addition of specific antibodies or by cycloheximide, indicating that gamma interferon induces the synthesis of a protein which can act synergistically with a signal produced by the beta-interferon receptor. We suggest that Ltk-aprt- cells suffer from defects in one or more components of the gene activation pathways for both type I and type II interferons. Nonetheless, gamma interferon is able to activate the expression of a gene encoding a protein required for signal transduction. This protein acts synergistically with a transient signal produced in response to beta interferon, thereby activating the expression of a further group of genes.
Interferon does not inactivate viruses or viral RNA. Virus growth is inhibited in interferon-treated cells, but apart from conferring resistance to virus growth, no other effect of interferon on cells has been definitely shown to take place. Interferon binds to cells even in the cold, but a period of incubation at 37°C is required for development of antiviral activity. Cytoplasmic uptake of interferon has not been unequivocally demonstrated. Studies with antimetabolites indicate that the antiviral action of interferon requires host RNA and protein synthesis. Experiments with 2-mercapto-1(β-4-pyridethyl) benzimidazole (MPB) suggest that an additional step is required between the binding and the synthesis of macromolecules. Interferon does not affect the adsorption, penetration, or uncoating of RNA or DNA viruses, but viral RNA synthesis is inhibited in cells infected with RNA viruses. The main action of interferon appears to be the inhibition of the translation of virus genetic information probably by inhibiting the initiation of virus protein synthesis.
The extracellular, acid-soluble cell products (EASCP) from Newcastle disease virus-infected L929 cells contain both interferon, defined as antiviral activity, and refractoriness inducing principle, defined as an activity that inhibits interferon production. L cells pretreated with EASCP and then infected with Newcastle disease virus give rise to EASCP with decreased amounts of interferon but an increased ratio of refractoriness inducing principle activity to interferon activity in a dose related manner. The antiviral activity of an EASCP preparation is not dependent upon its refractoriness inducing principle level, but is entirely dependent on its interferon content. Our results provide additional evidence that interferon and refractoriness inducing principle are different biological entities and not polymorphic functions of the interferon molecule.
The pleiotropic cytokine interferon alpha is involved in multiple aspects of lupus etiology and pathogenesis. Interferon alpha is important under normal circumstances for antiviral responses and immune activation. However, heightened levels of serum interferon alpha and expression of interferon response genes are common in lupus patients. Lupus-associated autoantibodies can drive the production of interferon alpha and heightened levels of interferon interfere with immune regulation. Several genes in the pathways leading to interferon production or signaling are associated with risk for lupus. Clinical and cellular manifestations of excess interferon alpha in lupus combined with the genetic risk factors associated with interferon make this cytokine a rare bridge between genetic risk and phenotypic effects. Interferon alpha influences the clinical picture of lupus and may represent a therapeutic target. This paper provides an overview of the cellular, genetic, and clinical aspects of interferon alpha in lupus.
The innate immune response, and in particular the alpha/beta interferon (IFN-α/β) system, plays a critical role in the control of viral infections. Interferons α and β exert their antiviral effects through the induction of hundreds of interferon-induced (or -stimulated) genes (ISGs). While several of these ISGs have characterized antiviral functions, their actions alone do not explain all of the effects mediated by IFN-α/β. To identify additional IFN-induced antiviral molecules, we utilized a recombinant chimeric Sindbis virus to express selected ISGs in IFN-α/β receptor (IFN-α/βR)−/− mice and looked for attenuation of Sindbis virus infection. Using this approach, we identified a ubiquitin homolog, interferon-stimulated gene 15 (ISG15), as having antiviral activity. ISG15 expression protected against Sindbis virus-induced lethality and decreased Sindbis virus replication in multiple organs without inhibiting the spread of virus throughout the host. We establish that, much like ubiquitin, ISG15 requires its C-terminal LRLRGG motif to form intracellular conjugates. Finally, we demonstrate that ISG15's LRLRGG motif is also required for its antiviral activity. We conclude that ISG15 can be directly antiviral.
Buckler, Charles E. (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Bethesda, Md.), and Samuel Baron. Antiviral action of mouse interferon in heterologous cells. J. Bacteriol. 91:231–235. 1966.—The antiviral action of mouse interferon in cell cultures of mouse, hamster, rat, chicken, and monkey origin was investigated. Using a vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) plaque reduction test, we found that mouse serum interferon, assayed on closely related rat or hamster cells, exerted 5% of its homologous antiviral activity. This activity was characterized as interferon by its temperature of inactivation, trypsin sensitivity, nonsedimentability, stability at pH 2, lack of inactivation by antibody to virus, and inability to be washed off cells. In the more distantly related chicken and monkey cells, mouse interferon had less than 0.1% of its homologous activity. Conflicting reports of heterologous activity of chicken and mouse interferon preparations may result in part from the observed action of noninterferon inhibitors of vaccinia virus. These inhibitors, like interferon, are stable at pH 2. They are present in mouse serum, mouse lung extracts, and allantoic fluid, and they prevent the development of vaccinia plaques when allowed to remain in contact with cells during virus growth. Unlike interferon the inhibitors are removed by adequate washing of cells prior to virus challenge, and they are not active in the VSV assay system. These findings reemphasize the need for thorough characterization of interferon preparations.
Interferon-gamma produced in monkey cells by transfection with mouse interferon-gamma cDNA suppressed the mouse in vitro antibody response in a manner similar to that of natural mouse interferon-gamma. Significant suppression was obtained with as little as 1 U of interferon. Recombinant human interferon-gamma produced by cloning in a similar fashion was not suppressive. Both the suppressive and the antiviral activities of recombinant interferon-gamma were neutralized by antibodies to mouse natural interferon-gamma. Thus, interferon-gamma was responsible for the immunosuppression. At the cellular level, the recombinant interferon-gamma was capable of activating macrophages to suppress antibody production. The data provide clear-cut evidence that interferon-gamma plays an important role in regulation of immunological processes.
The innate host response to virus infection is largely dominated by the production of type I interferon and interferon stimulated genes. In particular, fibroblasts respond robustly to viral infection and to recognition of viral signatures such as dsRNA with the rapid production of type I interferon; subsequently, fibroblasts are a key cell type in antiviral protection. We recently found, however, that primary fibroblasts deficient for the production of interferon, interferon stimulated genes, and other cytokines and chemokines mount a robust antiviral response against both DNA and RNA viruses following stimulation with dsRNA. Nitric oxide is a chemical compound with pleiotropic functions; its production by phagocytes in response to interferon-γ is associated with antimicrobial activity. Here we show that in response to dsRNA, nitric oxide is rapidly produced in primary fibroblasts. In the presence of an intact interferon system, nitric oxide plays a minor but significant role in antiviral protection. However, in the absence of an interferon system, nitric oxide is critical for the protection against DNA viruses. In primary fibroblasts, NF-κB and interferon regulatory factor 1 participate in the induction of inducible nitric oxide synthase expression, which subsequently produces nitric oxide. As large DNA viruses encode multiple and diverse immune modulators to disable the interferon system, it appears that the nitric oxide pathway serves as a secondary strategy to protect the host against viral infection in key cell types, such as fibroblasts, that largely rely on the type I interferon system for antiviral protection.
Viruses utilize numerous mechanisms to counteract the host's immune response. Interferon production is a major component of the host antiviral response. Many viruses, therefore, produce proteins or RNA molecules that inhibit interferon-induced signal transduction pathways and their associated antiviral effects. Surprisingly, some viruses directly induce expression of interferon-induced genes. SM, an early lytic Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) nuclear protein, was found to specifically increase the expression of several genes (interferon-stimulated genes) that are known to be strongly induced by alpha/beta interferons. SM does not directly stimulate alpha/beta interferon secretion but instead induces STAT1, an intermediate step in the interferon signaling pathway. SM is a posttranscriptional activator of gene expression and increases STAT1 mRNA accumulation, particularly that of the functionally distinct STAT1β splice variant. SM expression in B lymphocytes is associated with decreased cell proliferation but does not decrease cell viability or induce cell cycle arrest. These results indicate that EBV can specifically induce cellular genes that are normally physiological targets of interferon by inducing components of cytokine signaling pathways. Our findings therefore suggest that some aspects of the interferon response may be positively modulated by infecting viruses.
Interferon could be recovered from homologous cells to which it was applied but could not be recovered from heterologous cells. The amount of interferon that could be recovered from cells corresponded to the sensitivity of the cells to the antiviral activity of the interferon: mouse embryo fibroblasts, which were 5 to 10 times as sensitive as L-929 cells to interferon, bound 5 to 10 times more interferon than the latter, whereas Lpa cells, which were only one-third as sensitive as L-929 cells to interferon, bound only one-third as much as the latter. The concentration of cell-bound interferon was as much as 150 times the extracellular concentration of interferon applied to the cells. Interferon bound to cells at 4 C with the same efficiency as it did to cells at 37 C, and actinomycin D-treated cells bound interferon as well as normal cells. Even though the total amount of interferon bound to cells was as much as 30% of the amount of interferon applied to them, no loss of antiviral activity was detectable from the medium.
Maleic anhydride-divinyl ether copolymer (pyran) and the polyribonucleotides are both large polyanions with potent antiviral activity. However, they are biologically quite different. Interferon levels of 100 units or more/ml were associated with antiviral activity of polyribonucleotides. Interferon induction by pyran compounds was not primarily involved in antiviral resistance because preparations that did not induce interferon possessed antiviral activity equal to that of interferoninducing preparations. Both polyriboinosinic-cytidylic acid [poly (rI.rC)] and pyran increased the immune response to sheep erythrocytes in the Jerne hemolytic plaque-forming cell (PFC) assay, but their modes of immunoadjuvant action differed. On peak day, poly (rI.rC)-treated mice demonstrated 5.1 × 104 PFC/spleen (557 PFC/106 nucleated cells) and pyran-treated mice exhibited 4.5 × 104 PFC/spleen (299 PFC/106 nucleated cells), as compared with 2.7 × 104 PFC/spleen (261 PFC/106 nucleated cells) in controls. The compounds also differed in phagocytic alteration; polyribonucleotides did not affect phagocytosis whereas pyran produced a biphasic response. Both polyanions exhibited toxic inhibition of liver microsomal enzyme metabolism of type I and type II drugs. However, whereas pyran sensitized mice 50-fold to the lethal effects of endotoxin, the polyribonucleotides did not significantly sensitize mice to endotoxin.
Cholera toxin added into cell cultures together with human leukocyte interferon inhibited the establishment of the antiviral state by interferon but not the anticellular activity of interferon in human cells. Sensitivities of various human cell lines to anticellular activities of interferon and cholera toxin were compared, but no direct correlation between both activities were demonstrated. These results suggest that antiviral and anticellular activities of interferon are due to different mechanism of actions, and cholera toxin does not act directly on the receptor site for interferon.
We previously found that enveloped virus binding and penetration are necessary to initiate an interferon-independent, IRF3-mediated antiviral response. To investigate whether membrane perturbations that accompany membrane fusion-dependent enveloped-virus entry are necessary and sufficient for antiviral-state induction, we utilized a reovirus fusion-associated small transmembrane (FAST) protein. Membrane disturbances during FAST protein-mediated fusion, in the absence of additional innate immune response triggers, are sufficient to elicit interferon-stimulated gene induction and establishment of an antiviral state. Using sensors of membrane disruption to activate an IRF3-dependent, interferon-independent antiviral state may provide cells with a rapid, broad-spectrum innate immune response to enveloped-virus infections.
Cellular antiviral responses are mediated partly by the expression of interferon-stimulated genes, triggered by viral genomes, their transcripts and replicative intermediates. Persistent replication of a hepatitis C virus (HCV) replicon suggests that the replicon does not elicit cellular innate antiviral responses. In the present study, we investigated regulatory factors of the interferon-mediated antiviral system in cells expressing an HCV replicon. Luciferase reporter assays revealed that the baseline activity of the interferon-stimulated response element (ISRE) was significantly lower in cells harboring the replicon than in naive cells. Among the proteins involved in the IFN/Jak/STAT pathway and in ISRE activity, the expression level of interferon regulatory factor 1 (IRF-1) was found to be significantly lower in cells harboring the replicon. Transfection of an IRF-1 expression construct into cells harboring the replicon caused an increase of ISRE activity, accompanied by suppression of expression of the HCV replicon. Moreover, in cured Huh7 cells from which the HCV replicon had been eliminated, the expression levels of IRF-1 and ISRE activity also were suppressed, demonstrating that the decrease of IRF-1 is attributable, not to active suppression by the viral proteins, but to adaptation of cells that enables replication of the HCV subgenome. The high permissiveness of the cured cells for the replicon was abolished by transgenic supplementation of IRF-1 expression. Taken together, IRF-1 is one of the key host factors that regulate intracellular HCV replication through modulation of interferon-stimulated-gene-mediated antiviral responses.
GBV-B induces hepatitis in tamarins and marmosets and is a surrogate model for HCV infections. Here, we cloned and characterized the antiviral activity of tamarin and marmoset interferon (IFN)α and IFNγ. Potent antiviral activity was observed for tamarin and marmoset IFNα in primary hepatocyte cultures infected with GBV-B. The antiviral activity was greater in cultures exposed to IFNα prior to GBV-B infection, suggesting that either GBV-B was capable of inhibition of the antiviral activity of exogenous IFNα or that the preexisting endogenous IFN response to the virus reduced efficacy to exogenous IFNα. IFNγ also exhibited antiviral activity in GBV-B infected hepatocytes. The transcriptional response to IFNα in marmoset hepatocytes was characterized using human genome microarrays. Since the GBV-B hepatocyte culture model possesses a functional innate immune response, it will provide opportunities to explore the nature of the antiviral response to a virus closely related to HCV.
HCV; hepatitis C virus; primate; microarray; innate immunity; ISG; liver
Human parainfluenza virus type 3 (HPIV3) is a respiratory paramyxovirus that infects lung epithelial cells to cause high morbidity among infants and children. To date, no effective vaccine or antiviral therapy exists for HPIV3 and therefore, it is important to study innate immune antiviral response induced by this virus in infected cells. Type-I interferons (IFN, interferon-α/β) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα activated by NFκB) are potent antiviral cytokines that play an important role during innate immune antiviral response. A wide-spectrum of viruses utilizes pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) like toll-like receptors (TLRs) and RLH (RIG like helicases) receptors such as RIGI (retinoic acid inducible gene -I) and Mda5 to induce innate antiviral response. Previously it was shown that both TNFα and IFNβ are produced from HPIV3 infected cells. However, the mechanism by which infected cells activated innate response following HPIV3 infection was not known. In the current study, we demonstrated that RIGI serves as a PRR in HPIV3 infected cells to induce innate antiviral response by expressing IFNβ (via activation of interferon regulatory factor-3 or IRF3) and TNFα (via activation of NF-κB).
As an early response to infection, cells induce a profile of the early inflammatory proteins including antiviral cytokines and chemokines. Two families of transcriptional factors play a major role in the transcriptional activation of the early inflammatory genes: The well-characterized family of NFkB factors and the family of interferon regulatory factors (IRF). The IRFs play a critical role in the induction of type I interferon (IFN) and chemokine genes, as well as genes mediating antiviral, antibacterial, and inflammatory responses. Type I IFNs represent critical components of innate antiviral immunity. These proteins not only exert direct antiviral effects, but also induce maturation of dendritic cells (DC), and enhance functions of NK, T and B cells, and macrophages. This review will summarize the current knowledge of the mechanisms leading to the innate antiviral response with a focus on its role in the regulation of HIV-1 infection and pathogenicity. We would like this review to be both historical and a future perspective.
virus; HIV-1; interferon; IRF; innate immune response
No interferon is made by L cells when they are infected with MM virus. However, several thousand units of interferon are produced when interferon-treated L cells are infected with MM virus. We call the conversion of cells, from nonproducers to producers, priming. The time required for cells to become fully primed is dependent on the interferon concentration with which they are incubated. Primed cells produced interferon earlier than normal cells stimulated by other inducers. Cells which were exposed to interferon in the presence of inhibitors of protein synthesis became fully primed yet developed no virus resistance. Also, primed cells produced interferon in response to low concentrations of polyriboinosinic acid · polyribocytidylic acid that did not induce interferon in normal cells. Therefore, priming appears to be a function of interferon separable from its antiviral activity. Several other picornaviruses that failed to induce interferon in L cells, human embryonic lung cells, or monkey kidney cells did induce interferon when these cells had been primed by homologous interferons.
Interferons are proteins produced by certain cells in response to stimuli such as foreign cells (including tumour cells), bacteria, and viral antigens. They interact both with the interferon producing cells and other cells through production of effector proteins. There are three main types of interferons, known as alpha, beta, and gamma, which have direct antiviral and immunomodulatory effects. Antiviral effects may include inhibition of viral replication, protein synthesis, maturation, or release from infected cells. Immunomodulating effects may include enhancement of macrophage, cytotoxic T cell, and natural killer cell activity. In chronic viral hepatitis, the precise mechanisms of action of alpha interferon are not yet certain. Patients with chronic hepatitis B, however, have been shown to lack endogenous interferon production; those who respond to alpha interferon treatment show a characteristic peak in serum amino-transferase activity before resolution of the infection, indicating an immune reaction. In chronic hepatitis C, the antiviral effect may be more important; patients who respond to alpha interferon tend to have higher values of 2'5' oligo adenylate synthetase, an enzyme induced by interferons that breaks down viral RNA. The clinical relevance of anti-interferon neutralising antibodies produced by some patients during interferon treatment has yet to be firmly established.