Christopher Luke Peterson and Joseph Li

LI & Peterson
Research on Capitol Hill

Each year, students from throughout Utah gather at the State Capitol to share a year's worth of hard work and discovery with their peers, and the entire state of Utah. These students truly represent the finest minds in Utah

Differential Effects of RNAi on Toll-Like Receptors in Human A549, A498, HEP-G2, and HEK-293 Cells Infected with Oncolytic Bluetongue Virus

Bluetongue virus (BTV) is a non-eveloped double-stranded RNA virus of the genus Orbivirus and Family Reoviridae. BTV's pathology in cattle, sheep, and other ruminants causes hemorrhagic fever and death.Although humans are not susceptible, BTV is oncolytic in some human cancers (Hu et al. 2007). BTV entry into a host cell is medicated by an unknown receptor. Toll-like receptors (TLR) recognize double-stranded RNA and other antigenic characteristics of BTV. As a part of the cell's innate immune system, TLRs also induce cascades that lead to inflammation and apoptosis (R. Medzhitov 2000; Zhang G.L. 2001). Therefore, TLRs potentially play an integral role in BTV infection and cellular response. RNAi was used to silence TLR mRNA expression.

Quantification of mRNA concentrations of BTV, TLR, and house genes were found through quantitive real-time PCR, our preliminary investigation shows BTV-infected cells are affected by the decrease in TLR expression. To substantiate our findings we used toll-like receptor SuperArray profiler to provide further data concerning TLR and associated pathways during BTV infection in A549, A498, HEP-G2, and HEK-293 cancer cells. These data should provide enough preliminary information to enable further determination of the mechanisms BTV regulates during infection.

Christopher Luke Peterson, Student Researcher, Ogden, UT
Joseph Li, Faculty Mentor, Biology