BackgroundMycobacterium bovis (M. bovis) is the principal causative agent of bovine tuberculosis; however, it may also cause serious infection in human being. Type I IFN is a key factor in reducing viral multiplication and modulating host immune response against viral infection. However, the regulatory pathways of Type I IFN signaling during M. bovis infection are not yet fully explored. Here, we investigate the role of Type I IFN signaling in the pathogenesis of M. bovis infection in mice.MethodsC57BL/6 mice were treated with IFNAR1-blocking antibody or Isotype control 24 h before M. bovis infection. After 21 and 84 days of infection, mice were sacrificed and the role of Type I IFN signaling in the pathogenesis of M. bovis was investigated. ELISA and qRT-PCR were performed to detect the expression of Type I IFNs and related genes. Lung lesions induced by M. bovis were assessed by histopathological examination. Viable bacterial count was determined by CFU assay.ResultsWe observed an abundant expression of Type I IFNs in the serum and lung tissues of M. bovis infected mice. In vivo blockade of Type I IFN signaling reduced the recruitment of neutrophils to the lung tissue, mediated the activation of macrophages leading to an increased pro-inflammatory profile and regulated the inflammatory cytokine production. However, no impact was observed on T cell activation and recruitment in the early acute phase of infection. Additionally, blocking of type I IFN signaling reduced bacterial burden in the infected mice as compared to untreated infected mice.ConclusionsAltogether, our results reveal that Type I IFN mediates a balance between M. bovis-mediated inflammatory reaction and host defense mechanism. Thus, modulating Type I IFN signaling could be exploited as a therapeutic strategy against a large repertoire of inflammatory disorders including tuberculosis.