Interferon-induced protein with tetratricopeptide repeats 1 (IFIT1), one of the interferon stimulated genes (ISGs), is strongly induced by type I interferon (IFN), double-stranded RNAs and virus infection. To investigate the actions of fish IFIT1 in response to virus infection, we cloned an IFIT1 homolog from orange spotted grouper (EcIFIT1) and clarified its function in this study. The full-length cDNA of EcIFIT1 is 1839 bp, which is composed of 436 amino acid (aa) residues, with 77.8% and 22.8% identity to IFIT1 homolog of yellow perch (Perca flavescens) and humans (homo sapiens), respectively. Sequence alignment analysis showed that EcIFIT1 contained three tetratricopeptide repeats (TPRs). Tissue distribution analysis indicated that EcIFIT1 was abundant in intestine, spleen, liver, and heart. Moreover, EcIFIT1 was significantly up-regulated by Singapore grouper iridovirus (SGIV) or red-spotted grouper nervous necrosis virus (RGNNV) infection, and polyinosinic-polycytidylic acid (poly I:C) or lipopolysaccharide (LPS) treatment in vitro. Under fluorescence microscopy, EcIFIT1 was found to localize throughout the cytoplasm in transfected cells. EcIFIT1 overexpression significantly suppressed the replication of SGIV and RGNNV, demonstrated by decreasing the cytopathic effect (CPE) severity, viral gene transcription and the virus titers. Further studies showed that the ectopic expression of EcIFIT1 increased the transcription level of IFN related molecules, including IFN regulatory factor (IRF) 3, IRF7, IFN stimulated gene (ISG) 15 and myxovirus resistance gene (MX) I. Meanwhile, the expression levels of pro-inflammation cytokines were differently regulated by the ectopic expression of EcIFIT1. In addition, flow cytometry analysis suggested that EcIFIT1 overexpression affected cell cycle progression by mediating S/G2 transition. Taken together, our results indicated that EcIFIT1 might exert antiviral function against fish virus by up-regulating interferon response or affecting cell cycle. Copyright © 2019. Published by Elsevier Ltd.