An overview of the lagomorph immune system and its genetic diversity

  title={An overview of the lagomorph immune system and its genetic diversity},
  author={Ana Pinheiro and Fabiana Neves and Ana Lemos de Matos and Joana Abrantes and Wessel van der Loo and Rose G. Mage and Pedro Jos{\'e} Esteves},
Our knowledge of the lagomorph immune system remains largely based upon studies of the European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus), a major model for studies of immunology. Two important and devastating viral diseases, rabbit hemorrhagic disease and myxomatosis, are affecting European rabbit populations. In this context, we discuss the genetic diversity of the European rabbit immune system and extend to available information about other lagomorphs. Regarding innate immunity, we review the most… 

TLR7 and TLR8 evolution in lagomorphs: different patterns in the different lineages

It is confirmed that TLR8 is absent in hares but widely expressed in the European rabbit, and the results suggest that, in lagomorphs, more in particular in leporids, TLR7 andTLR8 genes have evolved faster than in any other mammalian group.

Strong selection of the TLR2 coding region among the Lagomorpha suggests an evolutionary history that differs from other mammals

The results suggest that the lagomorph TLR2 has been strongly involved in pathogen recognition, which probably caused a host-pathogen arms race that led to the observed acceleration of the mutation rate in lagomorphs.

Evolutionary study of leporid CD4 reveals a hotspot of genetic variability within the D2 domain

Researchers study the evolution of CD4 in lagomorphs by comparing sequences obtained for the genera Oryctolagus, Sylvilagus, Lepus, and Ochotona to hypothesize that this endogenous retrovirus, that was most probably exogenous in the past, drove the divergent evolution of leporid CD4.