Activation of the chicken type I IFN response by infectious bronchitis coronavirus

J. Kint, M.M. Fernandez Gutierrez, H.J. Maier, P. Britton, M.A. Langereis, J. Koumans, G.F. Wiegertjes, M. Forlenza

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Coronaviruses from both the Alpha and Betacoronavirus genera, interfere with the type I interferon (IFN) response in various ways, ensuring limited activation of the IFN response in most cell types. Of Gammacoronaviruses that mainly infect birds, little is known about activation of the host immune response. We show that the prototypical Gammacoronavirus, infectious bronchitis virus (IBV), induces a delayed activation of the IFN response in primary renal cells, tracheal epithelial cells and in a chicken cell line. Ifnß expression in fact, is delayed with respect to the peak of viral replication and accompanying accumulation of dsRNA. In addition, we demonstrate that MDA5 is the primary sensor for Gammacoronavirus infections in chicken cells. Furthermore, we provide evidence that accessory proteins 3a and 3b of IBV modulate the IFN response at the transcriptional and translational level. Finally, we show that, despite the lack of activation of the IFN response during the early phase of IBV infection, signalling of non-self dsRNA through both MDA5 and TLR3 remains intact in IBV-infected cells. Taken together, this study provides the first comprehensive analysis of host-virus interactions of a Gammacoronavirus with avian innate immune responses.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1156-1167
JournalJournal of Virology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • mouse hepatitis-virus
  • singly labeled probes
  • double-stranded-rna
  • rig-i
  • murine coronavirus
  • innate immunity
  • receptor activation
  • viral-rna
  • cells
  • induction

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    Kint, J., Fernandez Gutierrez, M. M., Maier, H. J., Britton, P., Langereis, M. A., Koumans, J., Wiegertjes, G. F., & Forlenza, M. (2015). Activation of the chicken type I IFN response by infectious bronchitis coronavirus. Journal of Virology, 89(2), 1156-1167.