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Current Pharmaceutical Design


ISSN (Print): 1381-6128
ISSN (Online): 1873-4286

Review Article

Viral MicroRNAs: Interfering the Interferon Signaling

Author(s): Imran Ahmad, Araceli Valverde, Hasan Siddiqui, Samantha Schaller and Afsar R. Naqvi*

Volume 26, Issue 4, 2020

Page: [446 - 454] Pages: 9

DOI: 10.2174/1381612826666200109181238

Price: $65


Interferons are secreted cytokines with potent antiviral, antitumor and immunomodulatory functions. As the first line of defense against viruses, this pathway restricts virus infection and spread. On the contrary, viruses have evolved ingenious strategies to evade host immune responses including the interferon pathway. Multiple families of viruses, in particular, DNA viruses, encode microRNA (miR) that are small, non-protein coding, regulatory RNAs. Virus-derived miRNAs (v-miR) function by targeting host and virus-encoded transcripts and are critical in shaping host-pathogen interaction. The role of v-miRs in viral pathogenesis is emerging as demonstrated by their function in subverting host defense mechanisms and regulating fundamental biological processes such as cell survival, proliferation, modulation of viral life-cycle phase. In this review, we will discuss the role of v-miRs in the suppression of host genes involved in the viral nucleic acid detection, JAK-STAT pathway, and cytokine-mediated antiviral gene activation to favor viral replication and persistence. This information has yielded new insights into our understanding of how v-miRs promote viral evasion of host immunity and likely provide novel antiviral therapeutic targets.

Keywords: Viruses, viral microRNA, interferons, post-transcriptional silencing, immune response, JAK-STAT.

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