Infectious bronchitis coronavirus limits interferon production by inducing a host shutoff that requires accessory protein 5b

Joeri Kint, Martijn A. Langereis, Helena J. Maier, Paul Britton, Frank J. van Kuppeveld, Joseph Koumans, Geert F. Wiegertjes, Maria Forlenza*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

During infection of their host cells, viruses often inhibit the production of host proteins, a process that is referred to as host shutoff. By doing this, viruses limit the production of antiviral proteins and increase production capacity for viral proteins. Coronaviruses from the genera Alphacoronavirus and Betacoronavirus, such as severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV), establish host shutoff via their nonstructural protein 1 (nsp1). The Gammacoronavirus and Deltacoronavirus genomes, however, do not encode nsp1, and it has been suggested that these viruses do not induce host shutoff. Here, we show that the Gammacoronavirus infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) does induce host shutoff, and we find that its accessory protein 5b is indispensable for this function. Importantly, we found that 5b-null viruses, unlike wild-type viruses, induce production of high concentrations of type I interferon protein in vitro, indicating that host shutoff by IBV plays an important role in antagonizing the host's innate immune response. Altogether, we demonstrate that 5b is a functional equivalent of nsp1, thereby answering the longstanding question of whether lack of nsp1 in gammacoronaviruses is compensated for by another viral protein. As such, our study is a significant step forward in the understanding of coronavirus biology and closes a gap in the understanding of some IBV virulence strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7519-7528
JournalJournal of Virology
Volume90
Issue number16
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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