Archives of Virology

, Volume 163, Issue 12, pp 3317–3325 | Cite as

Griffithsin inhibits porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus infection in vitro

  • Lan Li
  • Xiaoning Tian
  • Jin Chen
  • Pengcheng Li
  • Qisheng ZhengEmail author
  • Jibo HouEmail author
Original Article


Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) is a pathogen that severely disrupts swine production. Despite sustained efforts, the disease is still endemic, with high mortality and morbidity. New antiviral strategies to control PRRSV are needed. Griffithsin, a red algal lectin, has potent antiviral effect on several human enveloped viruses, but this effect has not been demonstrated on PRRSV. Here, we first tested the in vitro antiviral activity of Griffithsin against PRRSV. Griffithsin exerted strong saccharide-dependent antiviral activity against PRRSV, probably through interactions with glycans on the surface of PRRSV that interfered with virus entry. Furthermore we revealed that Griffithsin’s action on PRRSV involved blocking viral adsorption, and it had no effect on viral penetration. Besides Our findings also suggested that Griffithsin may interfere with cell-to-cell spread to prevent virus transmission. The remarkable potency profile of Griffithsin supports its potential value as an antiviral agent against PRRSV.



This study was supported by grants from the Special Fund for Agro-scientific Research in the Public Interest (No. 201303046). The erythrocytes were kindly provided by Yiwei Wang.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Research, Center of Engineering and Technology for Veterinary BiologicalsJiangsu Academy of Agricultural SciencesNanjingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.College of Veterinary MedicineNanjing Agricultural UniversityNanjingPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.Jiangsu Co-innovation Center for Prevention and Control of Important Animal Infectious Diseases and ZoonosesYangzhouPeople’s Republic of China

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