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Nat Immunol. 2006 Feb;7(2):148-55. Epub 2006 Jan 15.

Suppressor of cytokine signaling 1 negatively regulates Toll-like receptor signaling by mediating Mal degradation.

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Centre for Functional Genomics and Human Disease, Monash Institute of Medical Research, Monash University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.


Toll-like receptor (TLR) signals that initiate innate immune responses to pathogens must be tightly regulated to prevent excessive inflammatory damage to the host. The adaptor protein Mal is specifically involved in signaling via TLR2 and TLR4. We demonstrate here that after TLR2 and TLR4 stimulation Mal becomes phosphorylated by Bruton's tyrosine kinase (Btk) and then interacts with SOCS-1, which results in Mal polyubiquitination and subsequent degradation. Removal of SOCS-1 regulation potentiates Mal-dependent p65 phosphorylation and transactivation of NF-kappaB, leading to amplified inflammatory responses. These data identify a target of SOCS-1 that regulates TLR signaling via a mechanism distinct from an autocrine cytokine response. The transient activation of Mal and subsequent SOCS-1-mediated degradation is a rapid and selective means of limiting primary innate immune response.

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