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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2014, 15(11), 21045-21068; doi:10.3390/ijms151121045

Interferons and Their Receptors in Birds: A Comparison of Gene Structure, Phylogenetic Analysis, and Cross Modulation

1
,
1,2,3,* , 1,2,3
and
1,2,3,*
1
Institute of Preventive Veterinary Medicine, Sichuan Agricultural University, Chengdu 611130, China
2
Avian Disease Research Center, College of Veterinary Medicine of Sichuan Agricultural University, 46 Xinkang Road, Ya'an 625014, China
3
Key Laboratory of Animal Disease and Human Health of Sichuan Province, Sichuan Agricultural University, Chengdu 611130, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 29 September 2014 / Revised: 26 October 2014 / Accepted: 4 November 2014 / Published: 14 November 2014
(This article belongs to the Section Molecular Recognition)
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Abstract

Interferon may be thought of as a key, with the interferon receptor as the signal lock: Crosstalk between them maintains their balance during viral infection. In this review, the protein structure of avian interferon and the interferon receptor are discussed, indicating remarkable similarity between different species. However, the structures of the interferon receptors are more sophisticated than those of the interferons, suggesting that the interferon receptor is a more complicated signal lock system and has considerable diversity in subtypes or structures. Preliminary evolutionary analysis showed that the subunits of the interferon receptor formed a distinct clade, and the orthologs may be derived from the same ancestor. Furthermore, the development of interferons and interferon receptors in birds may be related to an animal’s age and the maintenance of a balanced state. In addition, the equilibrium between interferon and its receptor during pathological and physiological states revealed that the virus and the host influence this equilibrium. Birds could represent an important model for studies on interferon’s antiviral activities and may provide the basis for new antiviral strategies. View Full-Text
Keywords: interferon; interferon receptor; predicted gene structure; phylogenetic analysis; interplay interferon; interferon receptor; predicted gene structure; phylogenetic analysis; interplay
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Zhou, H.; Chen, S.; Wang, M.; Cheng, A. Interferons and Their Receptors in Birds: A Comparison of Gene Structure, Phylogenetic Analysis, and Cross Modulation. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2014, 15, 21045-21068.

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