Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Mol Cell Biol. 2012 Jun;32(12):2239-53. doi: 10.1128/MCB.06597-11. Epub 2012 Apr 2.

MicroRNA-155 is required for Mycobacterium bovis BCG-mediated apoptosis of macrophages.

Author information

  • 1Department of Microbiology and Cell Biology, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India.


Pathogenic mycobacteria, including Mycobacterium tuberculosis and Mycobacterium bovis, cause significant morbidity and mortality worldwide. However, the vaccine strain Mycobacterium bovis BCG, unlike virulent strains, triggers extensive apoptosis of infected macrophages, a step necessary for the elicitation of robust protective immunity. We here demonstrate that M. bovis BCG triggers Toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2)-dependent microRNA-155 (miR-155) expression, which involves signaling cross talk among phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K), protein kinase Cδ (PKCδ), and mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) and recruitment of NF-κB and c-ETS to miR-155 promoter. Genetic and signaling perturbations presented the evidence that miR-155 regulates PKA signaling by directly targeting a negative regulator of PKA, protein kinase inhibitor alpha (PKI-α). Enhanced activation of PKA signaling resulted in the generation of PKA C-α; phosphorylation of MSK1, cyclic AMP response element binding protein (CREB), and histone H3; and recruitment of phospho-CREB to the apoptotic gene promoters. The miR-155-triggered activation of caspase-3, BAK1, and cytochrome c translocation involved signaling integration of MAPKs and epigenetic or posttranslational modification of histones or CREB. Importantly, M. bovis BCG infection-induced apoptosis was severely compromised in macrophages derived from miR-155 knockout mice. Gain-of-function and loss-of-function studies validated the requirement of miR-155 for M. bovis BCG's ability to trigger apoptosis. Overall, M. bovis BCG-driven miR-155 dictates cell fate decisions of infected macrophages, strongly implicating a novel role for miR-155 in orchestrating cellular reprogramming during immune responses to mycobacterial infection.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk