Some commonly used inducers of interferon such as viruses and double-stranded RNA are known to inhibit cellular protein synthesis. We have now shown that conventional inhibitors of macromolecular synthesis such as cycloheximide, 2-(4-methyl-2, 6-dinitroanilino)--methyl propionamide (MDMP) and 1-β--ribofuranosylbenzimidazole (DRB) can induce the production of significant amounts of interferon in human fibroblastoid cell lines. The interferon-inducing activity of these inhibitors depends on the concentration as well as the time of treatment with the inhibitors. These findings lead to the suggestion that the induction of human interferon may be mediated by a reduction in the critical concentration of a rapidly turning over repressor(s) which normally represses the interferon gene(s) in uninduced cells.


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