Scientific reports 2016 Oct 136() 34752 doi 10.1038/srep34752
The Bowman-Birk inhibitor (BBI), a soybean-derived protease inhibitor, is known to have anti-inflammatory effect in both in vitro and in vivo systems. Macrophages play a key role in inflammation and immune activation, which is implicated in HIV disease progression. Here, we investigated the effect of BBI on HIV infection of peripheral blood monocyte-derived macrophages. We demonstrated that BBI could potently inhibit HIV replication in macrophages without cytotoxicity. Investigation of the mechanism(s) of BBI action on HIV showed that BBI induced the expression of IFN-β and multiple IFN stimulated genes (ISGs), including Myxovirus resistance protein 2 (Mx2), 2′,5′-oligoadenylate synthetase (OAS-1), Virus inhibitory protein (viperin), ISG15 and ISG56. BBI treatment of macrophages also increased the expression of several known HIV restriction factors, including APOBEC3F, APOBEC3G and tetherin. Furthermore, BBI enhanced the phosphorylation of IRF3, a key regulator of IFN-β. The inhibition of IFN-β pathway by the neutralization antibody to type I IFN receptor (Anti-IFNAR) abolished BBI-mediated induction of the anti-HIV factors and inhibition of HIV in macrophages. These findings that BBI could activate IFN-β-mediated signaling pathway, initialize the intracellular innate immunity in macrophages and potently inhibit HIV at multiple steps of viral replication cycle indicate the necessity to further investigate BBI as an alternative and cost-effective anti-HIV natural product.