Sullivan, C., Postlethwait, J.H., Lage, C.R., Millard, P.J., and Kim, C.H. (2007) Evidence for Evolving Toll-IL-1 Receptor-Containing Adaptor Molecule Function in Vertebrates. Journal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950). 178(7):4517-4527.
In mammals, Toll-IL-1R-containing adaptor molecule 1 (TICAM1)-dependent TLR pathways induce NF-kappaB and IFN-beta responses. TICAM1 activates NF-kappaB through two different pathways involving its interactions with TNFR-associated factor 6 and receptor-interacting protein 1. It also activates IFN regulatory factor 3/7 through its interaction with TANK-binding kinase-1, leading to the robust up-regulation of IFN-beta. In this study, we describe the role of zebrafish (Danio rerio) TICAM1 in activating NF-kappaB and zebrafish type I IFN. Zebrafish IFN is unique in that it cannot be categorized as being alpha- or beta-like. Through comprehensive sequence, phylogenetic, and syntenic analyses, we fully describe the identification of a zebrafish TICAM1 ortholog. Zebrafish TICAM1 exhibits sequence divergence from its mammalian orthologs and our data demonstrate that these sequence differences have functional consequences. Zebrafish TICAM1 activates zebrafish IFN; however, it does so in an apparently IFN regulatory factor 3/7-independent manner. Furthermore, zebrafish TICAM1 does not interact with zebrafish TNFR-associated factor 6, thus NF-kappaB activation is dependent upon its interaction with receptor-interacting protein 1. Comparative genome analysis suggests that TICAM1 and TICAM2 evolved from a common vertebrate TICAM ancestor following a gene duplication event and that TICAM2 was lost in teleosts following the divergence of the rayfin and lobefin fishes 450 million years ago. These studies provide evidence, for the first time, of the evolving function of a vertebrate TLR pathway.