Attenuated Duck Hepatitis A Virus Infection Is Associated With High mRNA Maintenance in Duckling Liver via m6A Modification

Front Immunol. 2022 Jun 9;13:839677. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2022.839677. eCollection 2022.


Host translation is generally modulated by viral infection, including duck hepatitis A virus (DHAV) infection. Previously, we reported that cellular protein synthesis in a cell model of duck embryo fibroblasts is significantly inhibited by DHAV infection but not viral proteins, suggesting that an important viral-host interaction occurs at the translational level. In this study, we aim to further understand the impact of DHAV virulence on cellular N6-methyladenosine (m6A) modification, which is essential to a wide variety of RNA biological processes, such as mRNA stabilization and translation. Using m6A antibody-based immunoprecipitation, m6A-seq, and LC-MS/MS, we observed that m6A-modified mRNA exists in both virulent and attenuated DHAV-infected duckling livers. Importantly, m6A levels in mRNA were much higher in attenuated DHAV-infected livers compared with virulent DHAV-infected livers, suggesting virulence-dependent regulation of m6A modification. Analysis of modification motifs indicated that GAAGAAG is the most enriched motif. Combined m6A-seq and RNA-seq data analysis indicated a generally positive correlation between m6A and mRNA expression levels in DHAV-infected duckling livers. GO analysis of genes with decreased or increased m6A levels showed that these genes were enriched in various terms, including oxidation-reduction processes and antiviral immune responses. Collectively, our work reveals DHAV virulence-dependent coordination between m6A modification and mRNA expression in duckling livers.

Keywords: duck hepatitis A virus; duck viral hepatitis; liver; m6A modification; virulence.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chromatography, Liquid
  • Ducks
  • Hepatitis A virus* / genetics
  • Hepatitis Virus, Duck* / genetics
  • Hepatitis, Viral, Animal*
  • Picornaviridae Infections*
  • Poultry Diseases*
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Tandem Mass Spectrometry


  • RNA, Messenger