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J Interferon Cytokine Res. 1997 Dec;17(12):769-79.

The antiproliferative and antiviral activities of IFN-tau variants in human cells.

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  • 1Department of Animal Sciences, University of Missouri, Columbia 65211-0001, USA.


The IFN-tau are type I IFN expressed by the early trophoblast of cattle and sheep but have activity on human cells and have been predicted to have potential therapeutic value. We have compared a series of mutant bovine and ovine IFN-tau with regard to their ability to inhibit the proliferation of Daudi cells and to evoke an antiviral (AV) response in WISH cells. Whereas Daudi cell growth was inhibited by Bo-IFN-tau1 in the 1 nM range, WISH cells were much less responsive, requiring exposure to 150 nM for protection against vesicular stomatitis virus. Replacement of lysines at positions 34, 107, 121, and 132 in Bo-IFN-tau, which are in regions predicted to interact with the type I receptor, led to modest but significant alterations in antiproliferative (AP) and AV activities. Replacement of the lysine residues at 160 and 164 had marked effects on biopotency, with K160 being particularly important. The different IFN-tau were able to activate the transcription factors ISGF3 and AAF (GAF) in Daudi cells at concentrations that correlated reasonably well with their AP potencies. Stat activation occurred in WISH cells in response to approximately 2 nM Bo-IFN-tau1, but ISGF3 formation could not be demonstrated even at the 100-fold higher IFN-tau concentrations that gave viral protection. Pretreatment of WISH cells with Hu-IFN-gamma allowed ISGF3 formation to be observed in response to subsequent treatment with Bo-IFN-tau1 or type I human IFN but did not increase the AV responsiveness of the cells. No evidence was found that IFN-tau elicit uniquely different responses on human cells than type I Hu-IFN, except they are much less potent. The data emphasize the importance of a region near the carboxyl terminus for the functional activity of type I IFN, and that although ISFG3 formation may be necessary, its mere presence is not sufficient to provide an antiviral response.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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