Influence of African Swine Fever Virus on Host Gene Transcription within Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells from Infected Pigs

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African swine fever virus (ASFV) has become a global threat to the pig production industry and has caused enormous economic losses in many countries in recent years. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from pigs infected with ASFV not only express ASFV genes (almost 200 in number) but have altered patterns of host gene expression as well. Both up- and down-regulation of host cell gene expression can be followed using RNAseq on poly(A)+ mRNAs harvested from the PBMCs of pigs collected at different times post-infection. Consistent with the time course of changes in viral gene expression, only few and limited changes in host gene expression were detected at 3 days post-infection (dpi), but by 6 dpi, marked changes in the expression of over 1300 host genes were apparent. This was co-incident with the major increase in viral gene expression. The majority of the changes in host gene expression were up-regulation, but many down-regulated genes were also identified. The patterns of changes in gene expression within the PBMCs detected by RNAseq were similar in each of the four infected pigs. Furthermore, changes in the expression of about twenty selected host genes, known to be important in host defence and inflammatory responses, were confirmed using high-throughput microfluidic qPCR assays.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2147
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2022

ID: 320870835