Ataxia telangiectasia mutated kinase mediates NF-κB serine 276 phosphorylation and interferon expression via the IRF7-RIG-I amplification loop in paramyxovirus infection

Ling Fang, Sanjeev Choudhary, Bing Tian, Istvan Boldogh, Chunying Yang, Teodora Ivanciuc, Yinghong Ma, Roberto Garofalo, Allan R. Brasier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Scopus citations


Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a primary etiological agent of childhood lower respiratory tract disease. Molecular patterns induced by active infection trigger a coordinated retinoic acid-inducible gene I (RIG-I)-Toll-like receptor (TLR) signaling response to induce inflammatory cytokines and antiviral mucosal interferons. Recently, we discovered a nuclear oxidative stress-sensitive pathway mediated by the DNA damage response protein, ataxia telangiectasia mutated (ATM), in cytokine-induced NF-κB/RelA Ser 276 phosphorylation. Here we observe that ATM silencing results in enhanced single-strand RNA (ssRNA) replication of RSVand Sendai virus, due to decreased expression and secretion of type I and III interferons (IFNs), despite maintenance of IFN regulatory factor 3 (IRF3)-dependent IFN-stimulated genes (ISGs). In addition to enhanced oxidative stress, RSV replication enhances foci of phosphorylated histone 2AX variant (γH2AX), Ser 1981 phosphorylation of ATM, and IKKγ/ NEMO-dependent ATM nuclear export, indicating activation of the DNA damage response. ATM-deficient cells show defective RSV-induced mitogen and stress-activated kinase 1 (MSK-1) Ser 376 phosphorylation and reduced RelA Ser 276 phosphorylation, whose formation is required for IRF7 expression. We observe that RelA inducibly binds the native IFN regulatory factor 7 (IRF7) promoter in an ATM-dependent manner, and IRF7 inducibly binds to the endogenous retinoic acid-inducible gene I (RIG-I) promoter. Ectopic IRF7 expression restores RIG-I expression and type I/III IFN expression in ATM-silenced cells. We conclude that paramyxoviruses trigger the DNA damage response, a pathway required for MSK1 activation of phospho Ser 276 RelA formation to trigger the IRF7-RIG-I amplification loop necessary for mucosal IFN production. These data provide the molecular pathogenesis for defects in the cellular innate immunity of patients with homozygous ATM mutations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2628-2642
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Virology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2015


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Virology

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