Upon infection, both DNA and RNA viruses can be sensed by pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) in the cytoplasm or the nucleus to activate antiviral innate immunity. Sensing of viral products leads to the activation of a signaling cascade that ultimately results in transcriptional activation of type I and III interferons, as well as other antiviral genes that together mediate viral clearance and inhibit viral spread. Therefore, in order for viruses to replicate and spread efficiently, they must inhibit the host signaling pathways that induce the innate antiviral immune response. In this review, we will highlight recent advances in the understanding of the mechanisms by which viruses evade PRR detection, intermediate signaling molecule activation, transcription factor activation, and the actions of antiviral proteins.
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