DOI: 10.15252/embj.2022112907 ISSN: 0261-4189

Viral recognition and the antiviral interferon response

Louise Dalskov, Hans Henrik Gad, Rune Hartmann
  • General Immunology and Microbiology
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • Molecular Biology
  • General Neuroscience


Interferons (IFNs) are antiviral cytokines that play a key role in the innate immune response to viral infections. In response to viral stimuli, cells produce and release interferons, which then act on neighboring cells to induce the transcription of hundreds of genes. Many of these gene products either combat the viral infection directly, e.g., by interfering with viral replication, or help shape the following immune response. Here, we review how viral recognition leads to the production of different types of IFNs and how this production differs in spatial and temporal manners. We then continue to describe how these IFNs play different roles in the ensuing immune response depending on when and where they are produced or act during an infection.

More from our Archive