Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 33420513
Link to DOI – 10.1007/s00335-020-09856-y
Mamm Genome 2021 02; 32(1): 30-37
Rift Valley fever (RVF) is an emerging viral zoonosis that primarily affects ruminants and humans. We have previously shown that wild-derived MBT/Pas mice are highly susceptible to RVF virus and that part of this phenotype is controlled by a locus located on distal Chromosome 11. Using congenic strains, we narrowed down the critical interval to a 530 kb region containing five protein-coding genes among which Rnf213 emerged as a potential candidate. We generated Rnf213-deficient mice by CRISPR/CAS9 on the C57BL/6 J background and showed that they were significantly more susceptible to RVF than control mice, with an average survival time post-infection reduced from 7 to 4 days. The human RNF213 gene had been associated with the cerebrovascular Moyamoya disease (MMD or MYMY) but the inactivation of this gene in the mouse resulted only in mild anomalies of the neovascularization. This study provides the first evidence that the Rnf213 gene may also impact the resistance to infectious diseases such as RVF.