Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 28165510
Nat. Struct. Mol. Biol. 2017 Mar;24(3):279-289
Type I interferons (IFNs) are multifunctional cytokines that regulate immune responses and cellular functions but also can have detrimental effects on human health. A tight regulatory network therefore controls IFN signaling, which in turn may interfere with medical interventions. The JAK-STAT signaling pathway transmits the IFN extracellular signal to the nucleus, thus resulting in alterations in gene expression. STAT2 is a well-known essential and specific positive effector of type I IFN signaling. Here, we report that STAT2 is also a previously unrecognized, crucial component of the USP18-mediated negative-feedback control in both human and mouse cells. We found that STAT2 recruits USP18 to the type I IFN receptor subunit IFNAR2 via its constitutive membrane-distal STAT2-binding site. This mechanistic coupling of effector and negative-feedback functions of STAT2 may provide novel strategies for treatment of IFN-signaling-related human diseases.