Absence of internal ribosome entry site-mediated tissue specificity in the translation of a bicistronic transgene.
The 5' noncoding regions of the genomes of picornaviruses form a complex structure that directs cap-independent initiation of translation. This structure has been termed the internal ribosome entry site (IRES). The efficiency of translation initiation was shown, in vitro, to be influenced by the binding of cellular factors to the IRES. Hence, we hypothesized that the IRES might control picornavirus tropism. In order to test this possibility, we made a bicistronic construct in which translation of the luciferase gene is controlled by the IRES of Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus. In vitro, we observed that the IRES functions in various cell types and in macrophages, irrespective of their activation state. In vivo, we observed that the IRES is functional in different tissues of transgenic mice. Thus, it seems that the IRES is not an essential determinant of Theiler's virus tropism. On the other hand, the age of the mouse could be critical for IRES function. Indeed, the IRES was found to be more efficient in young mice. Picornavirus IRESs are becoming popular tools in transgenesis technology, since they allow the expression of two genes from the same transcription unit. Our results show that the Theiler's virus IRES is functional in cells of different origins and that it is thus a broad-spectrum tool. The possible age dependency of the IRES function, however, could be a drawback for gene expression in adult mice. (+info)
Pimobendan inhibits the production of proinflammatory cytokines and gene expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase in a murine model of viral myocarditis.
OBJECTIVES: This study was designed to examine the effects of pimobendan in a murine model of viral myocarditis in relation to proinflammatory cytokine production and nitric oxide (NO) synthesis by inducible NO synthase (iNOS) in the heart. BACKGROUND: Pimobendan has been recently confirmed to improve both acute and chronic heart failure. Since the modulation of myocardial necrosis and contractile dysfunction by various proinflammatory cytokines may be partially mediated by the production of nitric oxide, the effects of pimobendan on the production ofproinflammatory cytokines and NO were investigated in an animal model of viral myocarditis involving heart failure. METHODS: DBA/2 mice were inoculated with the encephalomyocarditis virus. To observe its effect on survival up to 14 days, pimobendan (0.1 mg/kg or 1 mg/kg) or vehicles were given from the day of virus inoculation (day 0) orally once daily. The effects of pimobendan on histological changes, cytokine production, NO production and iNOS gene expression in the heart were studied in mice treated either with pimobendan, 1 mg/kg or with vehicles only, and sacrificed seven days after virus inoculation. RESULTS: The survival of mice improved in a dose-dependent fashion such that a significant difference (p < 0.02) was found between the higher-dose pimobendan group (20 of 30 [66.7%]) and the control group (11 of 30 [36.7%]). Histological scores for cellular infiltration (1.1+/-0.1 vs. 2.0+/-0.0, p < 0.001), intracardiac tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha (18.2+/-1.8 vs. 35.8+/-4.2 pg/mg heart, p < 0.001) and interleukin (IL)-1beta (9.3 +/-1.2 vs. 26.6+/-7.1 pg/mg heart, p < 0.01) were significantly lower in the mice given pimobendan versus those of the control mice. Interleukin-6 levels (7.1+/-0.8 vs. 9.2+/-1.9 pg/mg heart) were also lower in the mice treated with pimobendan. Furthermore, intracardiac NO production was significantly (p < 0.001) less in the pimobendan group (0.165+/-0.004 nmol/mg heart) than in the control group (0.291+/-0.051 nmol/mg heart), and intracardiac iNOS gene expression in the mice given pimobendan was 74% lower than it was in the control animals (p < 0.01). CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that the beneficial effects of pimobendan in viral myocarditis are partially mediated by the inhibition of both proinflammatory cytokine production and NO synthesis by iNOS. (+info)
Prevention of encephalomyocarditis virus-induced diabetes in mice by inhibition of the tyrosine kinase signalling pathway and subsequent suppression of nitric oxide production in macrophages.
Macrophages comprise the major population of cells infiltrating pancreatic islets during the early stages of infection in DBA/2 mice by the D variant of encephalomyocarditis virus (EMC-D virus). Inactivation of macrophages prior to viral infection almost completely prevents EMC-D virus-induced diabetes. This investigation was initiated to determine whether a tyrosine kinase signalling pathway might be involved in the activation of macrophages by EMC-D virus infection and whether tyrosine kinase inhibitors might, therefore, abrogate EMC-D virus-induced diabetes in vivo. When isolated macrophages were infected with EMC-D virus, inducible nitric oxide synthase mRNA was expressed and nitric oxide was subsequently produced. Treatment of macrophages with the tyrosine kinase inhibitor tyrphostin AG126, but not tyrphostin AG556, prior to EMC-D virus infection blocked the production of nitric oxide. The infection of macrophages with EMC-D virus also resulted in the activation of the mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) p42(MAPK/ERK2)/p44(MAPK/ERK1), p38(MAPK), and p46/p54(JNK). In accord with the greater potency of AG126 than of AG556 in blocking EMC-D virus-mediated macrophage activation, the incidence of diabetes in EMC-D virus-infected mice treated with AG126 (25%) was much lower than that in AG556-treated (75%) or vehicle-treated (88%) control mice. We conclude that EMC-D virus-induced activation of macrophages resulting in macrophage-mediated beta-cell destruction can be prevented by the inhibition of a tyrosine kinase signalling pathway involved in macrophage activation. (+info)
Baculovirus stimulates antiviral effects in mammalian cells.
Herein, we report that Autographa californica nucleopolyhedrovirus, a member of the Baculoviridae family, is capable of stimulating antiviral activity in mammalian cells. Baculoviruses are not pathogenic to mammalian cells. Nevertheless, live baculovirus is shown here to induce interferons (IFN) from murine and human cell lines and induces in vivo protection of mice from encephalomyocarditis virus infection. Monoclonal antibodies specific for the baculovirus envelope gp67 neutralize baculovirus-dependent IFN production. Moreover, UV treatment of baculovirus eliminates both infectivity and IFN-inducing activity. In contrast, the IFN-inducing activity of the baculovirus was unaffected by DNase or RNase treatment. These data demonstrate that IFN production can be induced in mammalian cells by baculovirus even though the cells fail to serve as a natural host for an active viral infection. Baculoviruses, therefore, provide a novel model in which to study at least one alternative mechanism for IFN induction in mammalian cells. (+info)
Microbiological contamination in genetically modified animals and proposals for a microbiological test standard for national universities in Japan.
The Biosafety Committee of the Japanese Association of Laboratory Animal Facilities of National Universities (JALAN) investigated recent episodes of microbiological contamination in genetically modified mice (GMM), and the countermeasures taken when the contaminated GMM were introduced into animal facilities, by questionnaires addressed to 53 animal facilities belonging to JALAN and serological tests. Although almost all of the contaminated GMM were accepted with conditions such as rederivation after or before reception and housing in designated rooms, contamination with a spectrum of microorganisms was demonstrated in GMM transferred domestically and from abroad. In serological tests, Mycoplasma pulmonis, mouse parvovirus, and mouse encephalomylitis virus were detected in GMM transferred from domestic facilities and from abroad. The present results of the questionnaires and serological tests suggest that GMM are highly and widely contaminated with microorganisms compared with mice from commercial breeders. Thus, we propose a microbiological requirement, including microbiological status--excellent, common, and minimum--as a guide for the transfer and procurement of mice and rats in Japan. (+info)
Three-dimensional structure of Theiler murine encephalomyelitis virus (BeAn strain).
Depending on the strain, Theiler murine encephalomyelitis virus (TMEV) may cause acute encephalitis or chronic demyelinating disease, which is associated with viral persistence in mice. Persistent central nervous system infection and demyelination by the less-virulent TMEV has provided a useful animal model for the human demyelinating disease multiple sclerosis. The less-virulent BeAn strain of TMEV was crystallized and its atomic structure was determined by x-ray crystallography. The alpha-carbon coordinates of the closely related Mengo virus were used to calculate the initial phases to 3.5 A resolution and the interpretable electron density map was produced by 10 cycles of 30-fold noncrystallographic molecular replacement averaging. The structure revealed a high degree of overall structural similarity to Mengo virus as well as substantial differences in the surface loops. These structural changes might be correlated with TMEV host-specific recognition, pH-related stability, and neurovirulence. (+info)
IgG subclass responses to Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus infection and immunization suggest a dominant role for Th1 cells in susceptible mouse strains.
Inbred mouse strains differ in susceptibility to Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus (TMEV)-induced demyelinating disease. A strong correlation between disease susceptibility and delayed-type hypersensitivity (DTH) has been previously demonstrated, but no strong correlation between disease susceptibility and total anti-TMEV ELISA titres was shown. Since both DTH and IgG2a antibody production are regulated by CD4+ Th1 cells, we investigated three strains of mice to determine whether antivirus IgG2a antibody levels, like DTH in previous studies, correlated with disease susceptibility. Susceptible SJL/J, intermediately susceptible C3H/HeJ, and resistant C57BL/6 mice were infected intracerebrally (i.c.) with the BeAn strain of TMEV and monitored for clinical signs of demyelination and for levels of TMEV-specific antibody of different IgG subclasses using a particle concentration fluorescence immunoassay (PCFIA). Resistant C57BL/6 mice were found to have significantly lower concentrations of total anti-TMEV antibody than susceptible SJL/J mice and intermediately susceptible C3H/HeJ mice show variable antibody responses. A predominance of anti-TMEV IgG2a (Th1 regulated) antibody was seen in susceptible and intermediately susceptible mice, whereas resistant mice displayed a predominant anti-TMEV IgG1 (Th2 regulated) response accompanied by a marked deficiency of IgG2a. In contrast, immunization of C57BL/6 mice with UV-inactivated TMEV in adjuvant revealed that this strain was not defective either in its ability to generate high levels of anti-TMEV antibody or in its ability to produce IgG2a antibody. These results suggest that the antivirus IgG subclass profile is dependent upon the immunization route, virus viability and/or the use of adjuvant and that the levels of antivirus subclasses may be predictive of disease susceptibility. (+info)
The interaction of two groups of murine genes determines the persistence of Theiler's virus in the central nervous system.
Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus is responsible for a chronic inflammatory demyelinating disease of the central nervous system of the mouse. The disease is associated with persistent viral infection of the spinal cord. Some strains of mice are susceptible to viral infection, and other strains are resistant. The effect of the genetic background of the host on viral persistence has not been thoroughly investigated. We studied the amount of viral RNA in the spinal cords of 17 inbred strains of mice and their F1 crosses with the SJL/J strain and observed a large degree of variability among strains. The pattern of viral persistence among mouse strains could be explained by the interaction of two loci. One locus is localized in the H-2D region of the major histocompatibility complex, whereas the other locus is outside this complex and is not linked to the Tcrb locus on chromosome 6. (+info)