Set7 facilitates hepatitis C virus replication via enzymatic activity-dependent attenuation of the IFN-related pathway

Tao Han, Yushun Wan, Jun Wang, Peng Zhao, Yue Yuan, Li Wang, Yinglong She, Ruth Broering, Mengji Lu, Linbai Ye, Ying Zhu

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16 Scopus citations


Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a major cause of chronic liver disease, usually resulting in persistent infection involving hepatic steatosis, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma via escape of the host's immune response. Set7 is a lysine-specific methyltransferase that is involved in gene regulation and virus replication. However, the mechanism underlying the immune evasion between HCV and Set7 is not well understood. In this study, we observed that the expression of Set7 in Huh7.5.1 cells was upregulated by HCV infection, and high levels of Set7 expression were also found in the sera, PBMCs, and liver tissue of HCV patients relative to healthy individuals. Further investigation showed that Set7 enhanced HCV replication in an enzymatic activity-dependent manner. Moreover, our data showed that Set7 decreased the expression of virus-induced IFN and IFN-related effectors, such as dsRNA-activated protein kinase and 29,59-oligoadenylate synthetase. Further investigation suggested that Set7 suppressed the endogenous IFN expression by reducing the nuclear translocation of IFN regulatory factor 3/7 and the p65 subunit of NF-κB and reduced IFN-induced dsRNA-activated protein kinase and 29,59-oligoadenylate synthetase via attenuation of the phosphorylation of STAT1 and STAT2. Additionally, IFN receptors, including IFNAR1 and IFNAR2, which are located upstream of the JAK/STAT pathway, were reduced by Set7. Taken together, our results reveal that Set7 facilitates HCV replication through the attenuation of IFN signaling pathways and IFN-related effectors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2757-2768
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 15 2015
Externally publishedYes

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Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2015 by The American Association of Immunologists, Inc.


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