Understanding host response to infectious salmon anaemia virus in an Atlantic salmon cell line using single-cell RNA sequencing

Ophelie Gervais, Carolina Penaloza, Remi Gratacap, Athina Papadopoulou, Mariana Beltran, Neil C Henderson, Ross Houston, Musa Hassan, Diego Robledo*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Background: Infectious Salmon Anaemia Virus (ISAV) is an Orthomixovirus that represents a large problem for salmonid aquaculture worldwide. Current prevention and treatment methods are only partially effective. Genetic selection and genome engineering have the potential to develop ISAV resistant salmon stocks. Both strategies can benefit from an improved understanding of the genomic regulation of ISAV pathogenesis. Here, we used single-cell RNA sequencing of an Atlantic salmon cell line to provide the first high dimensional insight into the transcriptional landscape that underpins host-virus interaction during early ISAV infection.
Results: Salmon head kidney (SHK-1) cells were single-cell RNA sequenced at 24h, 48h and 96h post-ISAV challenge. At 24h post infection, cells showed expression signatures consistent with viral entry, with genes such as PI3K, FAK or JNK being upregulated relative to uninfected cells. At 48h and 96h, infected cells showed a clear anti-viral response, characterised by the expression of IFNA2 or IRF2. Uninfected bystander cells at 48h and 96h also showed clear transcriptional differences, potentially suggesting paracrine signalling from infected cells. These bystander cells expressed pathways such as mRNA sensing, RNA degradation, ubiquitination or proteasome; and up-regulation of mitochondrial ribosome genes also seemed to play a role in the host response to the infection. Correlation between viral and host genes revealed novel genes potentially key for this fish-virus interaction.
Conclusions: This study has increased our understanding of the cellular response of Atlantic salmon during ISAV infection and revealed host-virus interactions at the cellular level. Our results highlight various potential key genes in this host-virus interaction, which can be manipulated in future functional studies to increase the resistance of Atlantic salmon to ISAV.
Original languageEnglish
Article number161
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalBMC Genomics
Issue number24
Early online date29 Mar 2023
Publication statusPublished - 29 Mar 2023

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • ISAV
  • Salmo salar
  • single cell RNA-Seq
  • aquaculture
  • SHK-1
  • disease


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