Activations of endosomal TLRs include TLR3, TLR7/8, and TLR9 stimulates the production of cytokines, such as type I interferons (IFNs), and therefore involves in virus-host interactions. In the present study, two equine anemia virus (EIAV) strains EIAVFDDV13 and EIAVFDDV3-8, which showed different induction on protective immunity, were compared regarding their ability to regulate the expression of endosomal TLRs, as well as type I IFNs, after infection of equine monocyte-derived macrophages (eMDMs). Our results showed that EIAVFDDV13 dramatically up-regulated the expression of TLR3 and IFNβ and less robustly up-regulated the expression of TRL9 and IFNα1, whereas EIAVFDDV3-8 induced significantly lower expression of type I IFN mRNA and protein and more strongly down-regulated the expression of TLR7 and TLR8. In addition, no significant differences in cell apoptosis were observed between these two strains. Given that the genomic variation of EIAVFDDV13 is considerably higher than that of molecular clone EIAVFDDV3-8, our results suggest that stronger TLR3 activation and increased INFβ production induced by the multi-species strain are associated with an effective vaccine-elicited protective immune response.
Keywords: EIAV; Protective immunity; TLRs; Type I IFNs.
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