Caister Academic Press

RNAi: An Antiviral Defense System in Insects

Bertsy Goic and Maria-Carla Saleh
from: RNA Interference and Viruses: Current Innovations and Future Trends (Edited by: Miguel Angel Martínez). Caister Academic Press, U.K. (2010)


Multicellular organisms evolved sophisticated defense systems to confer protection against pathogens. An important characteristic of these immune systems is their ability to act both locally at the site of infection and at distal uninfected locations (Baulcombe, 2004; Dorner and Radbruch, 2007; Roitt et al., 2001; Voinnet, 2005). Insects rely on multiple immune responses to combat infection; one of them is RNA interference (RNAi). Here we review the current knowledge on the general mechanism of RNAi and summarize what is known about the antiviral role of RNAi in the insect model Drosophila melanogaster. We also discuss the strategies evolved by viruses to suppress the RNAi response. Finally, we briefly describe the RNAi mechanism in other insects of economical and/or health relevance read more ...
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