Select nutrients, progesterone, and interferon tau affect conceptus metabolism and development Conference Paper uri icon


  • Interferon tau (IFNT), a novel multifunctional type I interferon secreted by trophectoderm, is the pregnancy recognition signal in ruminants that also has antiviral, antiproliferative, and immunomodulatory bioactivities. IFNT, with progesterone, affects availability of the metabolic substrate in the uterine lumen by inducing expression of genes for transport of select nutrients into the uterine lumen that activate mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) cell signaling responsible for proliferation, migration, and protein synthesis by conceptus trophectoderm. As an immunomodulatory protein, IFNT induces an anti-inflammatory state affecting metabolic events that decrease adiposity and glutamine:fructose-6-phosphate amidotransferase 1 activity, while increasing insulin sensitivity, nitric oxide production by endothelial cells, and brown adipose tissue in rats. This short review focuses on effects of IFNT and progesterone affecting transport of select nutrients into the uterine lumen to stimulate mTOR cell signaling required for conceptus development, as well as effects of IFNT on the immune system and adiposity in rats with respect to its potential therapeutic value in reducing obesity.

altmetric score

  • 3

author list (cited authors)

  • Bazer, F. W., Kim, J., Song, G., Ka, H., Tekwe, C. D., & Wu, G.

citation count

  • 30
  • 31

publication date

  • October 2012