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This article is the author’s final published version in PLoS Pathogens, Volume 15, Issue 12, December 2019, Article number e1008239.

The published version is available at Copyright © Wong et al.

Publication made possible in part by support from the Thomas Jefferson University + Philadelphia University Open Access Fund


Cells sensing infection produce Type I interferons (IFN-I) to stimulate Interferon Stimulated Genes (ISGs) that confer resistance to viruses. During lympho-hematogenous spread of the mouse pathogen ectromelia virus (ECTV), the adaptor STING and the transcription factor IRF7 are required for IFN-I and ISG induction and resistance to ECTV. However, it is unknown which cells sense ECTV and which pathogen recognition receptor (PRR) upstream of STING is required for IFN-I and ISG induction. We found that cyclic-GMP-AMP (cGAMP) synthase (cGAS), a DNA-sensing PRR, is required in bone marrow-derived (BMD) but not in other cells for IFN-I and ISG induction and for resistance to lethal mousepox. Also, local administration of cGAMP, the product of cGAS that activates STING, rescues cGAS but not IRF7 or IFN-I receptor deficient mice from mousepox. Thus, sensing of infection by BMD cells via cGAS and IRF7 is critical for resistance to a lethal viral disease in a natural host.

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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