Type III interferon restriction by porcine epidemic diarrhea virus and the role of viral protein nsp1 in IRF1 signaling

Qingzhan Zhang, Hanzhong Ke, Anthony Blikslager, Takashi Fujita, Dongwan Yoo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Type III interferons (IFNs) play a vital role in maintaining the antiviral state of the mucosal epithelial surface in the gut, and in turn, enteric viruses may have evolved to evade the type III IFN responses during infection. To study the possible immune evasion of the type III IFN response by porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV), a line of porcine intestinal epithelial cells was developed as a cell model for PEDV replication. IFN-γ1 and IFN-γ3 inhibited PEDV replication, indicating the anti-PEDV activity of type III IFNs. Of the 21 PEDV proteins, nsp1, nsp3, nsp5, nsp8, nsp14, nsp15, nsp16, open reading frame 3 (ORF3), E, M, and N were found to suppress type III IFN activities, and IRF1 (interferon regulatory factor 1) signaling mediated the suppression. PEDV specifically inhibited IRF1 nuclear translocation. The peroxisome is the innate antiviral signaling platform for the activation of IRF1-mediated IFN-γ production, and the numbers of peroxisomes were found to be decreased in PEDV-infected cells. PEDV nsp1 blocked the nuclear translocation of IRF1 and reduced the number of peroxisomes to suppress IRF1- mediated type III IFNs. Mutational studies showed that the conserved residues of nsp1 were crucial for IRF1-mediated IFN-γ suppression. Our study for the first time provides evidence that the porcine enteric virus PEDV downregulates and evades IRF1-mediated type III IFN responses by reducing the number of peroxisomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere01677-17
JournalJournal of virology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Feb 1 2018


  • Enteric coronaviruses
  • IFN lambda
  • IRF1
  • Innate immune evasion
  • Nsp1
  • PEDV
  • Peroxisomes
  • Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus
  • Type III interferons

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Insect Science
  • Virology


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