BRD4 inhibition exerts anti-viral activity through DNA damage-dependent innate immune responses.

PLoS pathogens (2020-03-26)
Jiang Wang, Guo-Li Li, Sheng-Li Ming, Chun-Feng Wang, Li-Juan Shi, Bing-Qian Su, Hong-Tao Wu, Lei Zeng, Ying-Qian Han, Zhong-Hu Liu, Da-Wei Jiang, Yong-Kun Du, Xiang-Dong Li, Gai-Ping Zhang, Guo-Yu Yang, Bei-Bei Chu
ABSTRAKT

Chromatin dynamics regulated by epigenetic modification is crucial in genome stability and gene expression. Various epigenetic mechanisms have been identified in the pathogenesis of human diseases. Here, we examined the effects of ten epigenetic agents on pseudorabies virus (PRV) infection by using GFP-reporter assays. Inhibitors of bromodomain protein 4 (BRD4), which receives much more attention in cancer than viral infection, was found to exhibit substantial anti-viral activity against PRV as well as a range of DNA and RNA viruses. We further demonstrated that BRD4 inhibition boosted a robust innate immune response. BRD4 inhibition also de-compacted chromatin structure and induced the DNA damage response, thereby triggering the activation of cGAS-mediated innate immunity and increasing host resistance to viral infection both in vitro and in vivo. Mechanistically, the inhibitory effect of BRD4 inhibition on viral infection was mainly attributed to the attenuation of viral attachment. Our findings reveal a unique mechanism through which BRD4 inhibition restrains viral infection and points to its potent therapeutic value for viral infectious diseases.

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