Antiviral Activity of Canine RIG-I against Canine Influenza Virus and Interactions between Canine RIG-I and CIV

RIG-I functions as a virus sensor that induces a cellular antiviral response. Although it has been investigated in other species, there have been no further studies to date on canine RIG-I against canine influenza virus (CIV). In the present study, we cloned the RIG-I gene of beagle dogs and characterized its expression, subcellular localization, antiviral response, and interactions with CIV proteins. RIG-I was highly expressed and mainly localized in the cytoplasm, with low levels detected in the nucleus. The results revealed that overexpression of the CARD domain of RIG-I and knockdown of RIG-I showed its ability to activate the RLR pathway and induced the expression of downstream interferon-stimulated genes. Moreover, overexpression of canine RIG-I suppressed the replication of CIV. The association between RIG-I and CIV was evaluated with the luciferase assay and by indirect immunofluorescence and bimolecular fluorescence complementation analyses. The results showed that CIV nonstructural protein 1 (NS1) can strongly suppress the RIG-I-mediated innate immune response, and the novel interactions between CIV matrix proteins (M1 and M2) and canine RIG-I were disclosed. These findings provide a basis for investigating the antiviral mechanism of canine RIG-I against CIV, which can lead to effective strategies for preventing CIV infection in dogs.