Oct 1, 1989

2-Aminopurine selectively blocks the transcriptional activation of cellular genes by virus, double-stranded RNA and interferons in human cells

European Journal of Biochemistry
M G WatheletG A Huez


Interferons, double-stranded RNA and viruses induce the transcription of partly overlapping sets of cellular genes. We have studied the regulation of 11 interferon-inducible genes by these agents and found that four of them were also directly inducible by virus and double-stranded RNA, and two by virus only. We have investigated whether an inhibitor of interferon-beta gene activation, 2-aminopurine, would block this induction process. Induction of these genes by virus and double-stranded RNA was indeed blocked by 2-aminopurine. Since a single cis-acting element can confer inducibility both to interferons, and to virus and double-stranded RNA, we tested the effect of 2-aminopurine on gene activation by interferon-alpha and interferon-gamma. Remarkably, in all the cell lines tested, these induction processes and the establishment of an antiviral state were blocked by the drug. These observations contrast with previous reports. The inhibitory effect of this drug on gene induction was exerted in a selective fashion and at the transcriptional level. This indicate that for the virus-, double-stranded-RNA-, and interferons-mediated gene induction, an early and similar step in signal transduction was affected by 2-aminopurine.

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Mentioned in this Paper

Heat shock proteins
Protein Kinase Inhibitors
RNA, Double-Stranded
Transcription, Genetic
Interferon Inducers

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