Diversity of interferon inducible Mx gene in horses and association of variations with susceptibility vis-à-vis resistance against equine influenza infection.
Mx1 has been implicated in resistance to the influenza virus. We have now identified four alleles of the Mxl gene in domesticated breeds of pigs. Two of the alleles encode deletion variants (a 3-bp deletion in exon 13 and an 11-bp deletion in exon 14), which might be expected to interfere with Mx activity. The porcine Mxl genes corresponding to wild type, the 3-bp deletion mutant, and the 11-bp deletion mutant were cloned and expressed in NIH3T3 cells, and the antiviral activity for influenza virus was assayed. Virus yield was observed to be 10–100-fold greater with the 11-bp deletion allele than that for wild type and the 3-bp deletion alleles. The results suggest that the 11-bp deletion type is lacking antiviral activity able to contribute to the interference of influenza virus replication.