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PLoS One. 2017 Jan 4;12(1):e0169317. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0169317. eCollection 2017.

Overexpression of Histone Deacetylase 6 Enhances Resistance to Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus in Pigs.

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State Key Laboratories of Agro-biotechnology, College of Biological Science, China Agricultural University, Beijing, China.
State Key Laboratory of Medicinal Chemical Biology, Collaborative Innovation Center for Biotherapy, Department of Genetics and Cell Biology, College of Life Sciences, Nankai University, Tianjin, China.
National Research Center for Veterinary Medicine, High-Tech. District, Luoyang, Henan Province, China.
College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, Henan Agricultural University, Zhengzhou, Henan Province, China.


Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) is one of the most economically relevant viral pathogens in pigs and causes substantial losses in the pig industry worldwide each year. At present, PRRSV vaccines do not effectively prevent and control this disease. Consequently, it is necessary to develop new antiviral strategies to compensate for the inefficacy of the available vaccines. Histone deacetylase 6 (HDAC6) is an important member of the histone deacetylase family that is responsible for regulating many important biological processes. Studies have shown that HDAC6 has anti-viral activities during the viral life cycle. However, whether HDAC6 overexpression enhances resistance to PRRSV in pigs remains unknown. In this study, we used a somatic cell cloning method to produce transgenic (TG) pigs that constitutively overexpress porcine HDAC6. These TG pigs showed germ line transmission with continued overexpression of HDAC6. In vitro, virus-challenged porcine alveolar macrophages (PAMs) overexpressed HDAC6, which suppressed viral gene expression and PRRSV production. In vivo, resistance to PRRSV in TG pigs was evaluated by direct or cohabitation mediated infection with a highly pathogenic PRRSV (HP-PRRSV) strain. Compared with non-TG (NTG) siblings, TG pigs showed a significantly lower viral load in the lungs and an extended survival time after infection with HP-PRRSV via intramuscular injection. In the cohabitation study, NTG pigs housed with challenged NTG pigs exhibited significantly worse clinical symptoms than the other three in-contact groups. These results collectively suggest that HDAC6 overexpression enhances resistance to PRRSV infection both in vitro and in vivo. Our findings suggest the potential involvement of HDAC6 in the response to PRRSV, which will facilitate the development of novel therapies for PRRSV.

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