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J Virol. 2003 Jan;77(2):1227-36.

Searching for interferon-induced genes that inhibit hepatitis B virus replication in transgenic mouse hepatocytes.

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Department of Molecular and Experimental Medicine, The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, California 92037, USA.


We have previously shown that alpha/beta interferon (IFN-alpha/beta) and IFN-gamma inhibit hepatitis B virus (HBV) replication noncytopathically in the livers of HBV transgenic mice and in hepatocyte cell lines derived from these mice. The present study was designed to identify transcriptionally controlled hepatocellular genes that are tightly associated with the inhibition of HBV replication and that might, therefore, mediate the antiviral effect of these cytokines. Twenty-nine genes were identified, many of which have known or potential antiviral activity. Notably, multiple components of the immunoproteasome and ubiquitin-like proteins were strongly induced by both IFN-alpha/beta and IFN-gamma, as were a number of GTP-binding proteins, including GTPases with known antiviral activity, chemokines, signaling molecules, and miscellaneous genes associated with antigen processing, DNA-binding, or cochaperone activity and several expressed sequence tags. The results suggest that one or more members of this relatively small subset of genes may mediate the antiviral effect of IFN-alpha/beta and IFN-gamma against HBV. We have already exploited this information by demonstrating that the antiviral activity of IFN-alpha/beta and IFN-gamma is proteasome dependent.

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