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, 2 (84), ra47

Mitofusin 2 Inhibits Mitochondrial Antiviral Signaling

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Mitofusin 2 Inhibits Mitochondrial Antiviral Signaling

Kai Yasukawa et al. Sci Signal.

Abstract

The innate immune response to viral infection involves the activation of multiple signaling steps that culminate in the production of type I interferons (IFNs). Mitochondrial antiviral signaling (MAVS), a mitochondrial outer membrane adaptor protein, plays an important role in this process. Here, we report that mitofusin 2 (Mfn2), a mediator of mitochondrial fusion, interacts with MAVS to modulate antiviral immunity. Overexpression of Mfn2 resulted in the inhibition of retinoic acid-inducible gene I (RIG-I) and melanoma differentiation-associated gene 5 (MDA-5), two cytosolic sensors of viral RNA, as well as of MAVS-mediated activation of the transcription factors interferon regulatory factor 3 (IRF-3) and nuclear factor kappaB (NF-kappaB). In contrast, loss of endogenous Mfn2 enhanced virus-induced production of IFN-beta and thereby decreased viral replication. Structure-function analysis revealed that Mfn2 interacted with the carboxyl-terminal region of MAVS through a heptad repeat region, providing a structural perspective on the regulation of the mitochondrial antiviral response. Our results suggest that Mfn2 acts as an inhibitor of antiviral signaling, a function that may be distinct from its role in mitochondrial dynamics.

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