Type I interferons (IFNs) are considered to be important mediators of innate immunity due to their inherent antiviral activity, ability to drive the transcription of a number of genes involved in viral clearance, and their role in the initiation of innate and adaptive immune responses. Due to the central role of type I IFNs, we sought to determine their importance in the generation of immunity to a recombinant vaccine vector fowlpox virus (FPV). In analyzing the role of type I IFNs in immunity to FPV, we show that they are critical to the secretion of a number of innate and proinflammatory cytokines, including type I IFNs themselves as well as interleukin-12 (IL-12), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), IL-6, and IL-1β, and that deficiency leads to enhanced virus-mediated antigen expression. Interestingly, however, type I IFNs were not required for adaptive immune responses to recombinant FPV even though plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs), the primary producers of type I IFNs, have been shown to be requisite for this to occur. Furthermore, we provide evidence that the importance of pDCs may lie in their ability to capture and present virally derived antigen to T cells rather than in their capacity as professional type I IFN-producing cells.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science