PUM1 is a biphasic negative regulator of innate immunity genes by suppressing LGP2 [Immunology and Inflammation]
PUM1 is an RNA binding protein shown to regulate the stability and function of mRNAs bearing a specific sequence. We report the following: (i) A key function of PUM1 is that of a repressor of key innate immunity genes by repressing the expression of LGP2. Thus, between 12 and 48 hours after transfection of human cells with siPUM1 RNA there was an initial (phase 1) upsurge of transcripts encoding LGP2, CXCL10, IL6, and PKR. This was followed 24 hours later (phase 2) by a significant accumulation of mRNAs encoding RIG-I, SP100, MDA5, IFIT1, PML, STING, and IFNβ. The genes that were not activated encoded HDAC4 and NF-κB1. (ii) Simultaneous depletion of PUM1 and LGP2, CXCL10, or IL6 revealed that up-regulation of phase 1 and phase 2 genes was the consequence of up-regulation of LGP2. (iii) IFNβ produced 48–72 hours after transfection of siPUM1 was effective in up-regulating LGP2 and phase 2 genes and reducing the replication of HSV-1 in untreated cells. (iv) Because only half of genes up-regulated in phase 1 and 2 encode mRNAs containing PUM1 binding sites, the upsurge in gene expression could not be attributed solely to stabilization of mRNAs in the absence of PUM1. (v) Lastly, depletion of PUM2 does not result in up-regulation of phase 1 or phase 2 genes. The results of the studies presented here indicate that PUM1 is a negative regulator of LGP2, a master regulator of innate immunity genes expressed in a cascade fashion.
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