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J Virol. 2018 Mar 14;92(7). pii: e02147-17. doi: 10.1128/JVI.02147-17. Print 2018 Apr 1.

Porcine Mx1 Protein Inhibits Classical Swine Fever Virus Replication by Targeting Nonstructural Protein NS5B.

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College of Veterinary Medicine, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, China.
Rugao Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Station, Rugao, China.
Institute of Veterinary Medicine, Jiangsu Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Nanjing, China.
College of Veterinary Medicine, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, China
Contributed equally


Mx proteins are interferon (IFN)-induced GTPases that have broad antiviral activity against a wide range of RNA and DNA viruses; they belong to the dynamin superfamily of large GTPases. In this study, we confirmed the anti-classical swine fever virus (CSFV) activity of porcine Mx1 in vitro and showed that porcine Mx2 (poMx2), human MxA (huMxA), and mouse Mx1 (mmMx1) also have anti-CSFV activity in vitro Small interfering RNA (siRNA) experiments revealed that depletion of endogenous poMx1 or poMx2 enhanced CSFV replication, suggesting that porcine Mx proteins are responsible for the antiviral activity of interferon alpha (IFN-α) against CSFV infection. Confocal microscopy, immunoprecipitation, glutathione S-transferase (GST) pulldown, and bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) demonstrated that poMx1 associated with NS5B, the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) of CSFV. We used mutations in the poMx1 protein to elucidate the mechanism of their anti-CSFV activity and found that mutants that disrupted the association with NS5B lost all anti-CSV activity. Moreover, an RdRp activity assay further revealed that poMx1 undermined the RdRp activities of NS5B. Together, these results indicate that porcine Mx proteins exert their antiviral activity against CSFV by interacting with NS5B.IMPORTANCE Our previous studies have shown that porcine Mx1 (poMx1) inhibits classical swine fever virus (CSFV) replication in vitro and in vivo, but the molecular mechanism of action remains largely unknown. In this study, we dissect the molecular mechanism of porcine Mx1 and Mx2 against CSFV in vitro Our results show that poMx1 associates with NS5B, the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase of CSFV, resulting in the reduction of CSFV replication. Moreover, the mutants of poMx1 further elucidate the mechanism of their anti-CSFV activities.


antivirus; classical swine fever virus (CSFV); mutants; nonstructural protein 5B (NS5B); porcine Mx1 (poMx1)

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