Genes for the Trophoblast Interferons and Their Distribution Among Mammals

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The trophoblast interferons (IFN), ovine and bovine trophoblast protein-1 (oTP-1 and bTP-1 respectively), possess many properties in common with other Type I IFN, including antiviral and antiproliferative activities. However, they differ from other IFN subtypes in terms of their specific pattern of expression and poor responsiveness to viral stimulation. We describe here data that suggest that the trophoblast IFN genes are also distinct from other Type I IFN genes with respect to species distribution, promoter organization and transcriptional regulation. These results have important implications in terms of trophoblast IFN gene evolution and add credence to the concept that the trophoblast IFN genes are a distinct IFN gene subtype well suited for their role in early pregnancy.



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