A common path to innate immunity to HIV-1 induced by toll-like receptor ligands in primary human macrophages

Xingyu Wang, Wei Chao, Manisha Saini, Mary Jane Potash

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21 Scopus citations


Toll-like receptors (TLR) represent the best characterized receptor family transducing innate immune responses, the first line of defense against microbial invaders. This study was designed to investigate whether responses through TLR inhibit HIV-1 replication in its primary target cells. Primary human macrophages and lymphocytes from several different donors and HIV-1 infection in tissue culture were used exclusively in this work. We report that ligands of three different TLR: LPS, R848, and double stranded RNA, induce a common antiviral response in macrophages as assayed by measurement of HIV-1 p24 protein, gag DNA, and entry into cells. HIV-1 infection is arrested after efficient entry but prior to reverse transcription. TLR-ligand activated cells secrete antiviral factors that induce a similar restriction. HIV-1 infection of lymphocytes is not affected by exposure to TLR ligands or to antiviral factors secreted by activated macrophages. TBK1, but neither NF-κB nor JAK-STAT activity, is required in macrophages to mount this antiviral response; the combination of p38 MAPK and JNK are partially required for induction of antiviral activity. Based on transcriptional induction and inhibition, the TLR-linked antiviral activity is different from APOBEC3 A or G, interferon-β, NAMPT, or p21 Cip1. The cell-type specificity, site of action, and requirement for signaling intermediates suggest that the TLR-linked antiviral activity is novel.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere24193
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes


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