Human rhinovirus (HRV) is the common virus that causes acute respiratory infection (ARI) and is frequently associated with lower respiratory tract infections (LRTIs). We aimed to investigate whether HRV infection induces a specific gene expression pattern in airway epithelial cells. Alveolar epithelial cell monolayers were infected with HRV species B (HRV-B). RNA was extracted from both supernatants and infected monolayer cells at 6, 12, 24 and 48 hours post infection (hpi) and transcriptional profile was analyzed using Affymetrix Gene-Chip and the results were subsequently validated using quantitative Real-time PCR method. HRV-B infects alveolar epithelial cells which supports implication of the virus with LRTIs. In total 991 genes were found differentially expressed during the course of infection. Of these, 459 genes were up-regulated whereas 532 genes were down-regulated. Differential gene expression at 6 hpi (187 genes up-regulated vs. 156 down-regulated) were significantly represented by gene ontologies related to the chemokines and inflammatory molecules indicating characteristic of viral infection. The 75 up-regulated genes surpassed the down-regulated genes (35) at 12 hpi and their enriched ontologies fell into discrete functional entities such as regulation of apoptosis, anti-apoptosis, and wound healing. At later time points of 24 and 48 hpi, predominated down-regulated genes were enriched for extracellular matrix proteins and airway remodeling events. Our data provides a comprehensive image of host response to HRV infection. The study suggests the underlying molecular regulatory networks genes which might be involved in pathogenicity of the HRV-B and potential targets for further validations and development of effective treatment.
Etemadi, M. R., Ling, K. H., Abidin, S. Z., Chee, H. Y., & Sekawi, Z. (2017). Gene expression patterns induced at different stages of rhinovirus infection in human alveolar epithelial cells. PLoS ONE, 12(5). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0176947