Viral selection pressure has acted on restriction factors that play an important role in the innate immune system by inhibiting the replication of viruses during primate evolution. Tripartite motif-containing (TRIM) family members are some of these restriction factors. It is becoming increasingly clear that gene expression differences, rather than protein-coding regions changes, could play a vital role in the anti-retroviral immune mechanism. Increasingly, recent studies have created genome-scale catalogues of DNase I hypersensitive sites (DHSs), which demark potentially functional regulatory DNA. To improve our understanding of the molecular evolution mechanism of antiviral differences between species, we leveraged 14 130 DHSs derived from 145 cell types to characterize the regulatory landscape of the TRIM region. Subsequently, we compared the alignments of the DHSs across six primates and found 375 DHSs that are conserved in non-human primates but exhibit significantly accelerated rates of evolution in the human lineage (haDHSs). Furthermore, we discovered 31 human-specific potential transcription factor motifs within haDHSs, including the KROX and SP1, that both interact with HIV-1. Importantly, the corresponding haDHS was correlated with antiviral factor TRIM23. Thus, our results suggested that some viruses may contribute, through regulatory DNA differences, to organismal evolution by mediating TRIM gene expression to escape immune surveillance.
Electronic supplementary material is available online at https://dx.doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.c.3491580.
- Received July 17, 2016.
- Accepted September 13, 2016.
- © 2016 The Author(s)
Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.