Molecular identification of goose (Anser cygnoide) suppressor ubiquitin-specific protease 18 (USP18) and the effects of goose IFN and TMUV on its comparative transcripts

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Ubiquitin-specific protease 18 (USP18) is known as an inhibition factor and has been associated with the innate immune response to pathogens. USP18 is the only deconjugating protease with specificity for interferon-stimulated gene 15 (ISG15), which is supposed to be missing in birds. To analyze the efficacy of goose USP18 (goUSP18) against Tembusu virus (TMUV) infection, we first cloned USP18 homologous cDNA from TMUV infected geese. The coding sequence was 1131 bp, and the deduced amino acid sequence shared conserved motifs with its homologues. Tissue-specific expression has shown that goUSP18 transcripts are strongly expressed in the spleen and liver of adult geese, as well as in the pancreas of goslings. Moreover, the goUSP18 transcripts were induced by goose interferons (goIFN) in goose embryo fibroblasts (GEF) and by TLR ligands in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). Notably, goUSP18 transcripts were highly up-regulated by TMUV infection compared to the basal level in uninfected birds. Taken together, these results suggested that goUSP18 was involved in host innate immunity against TMUV infection.

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