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Nat Immunol. 2011 Feb;12(2):144-50. doi: 10.1038/ni.1976. Epub 2010 Dec 19.

IL-1β-driven neutrophilia preserves antibacterial defense in the absence of the kinase IKKβ.

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Institute of Molecular Medicine, College of Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan.


Transcription factor NF-κB and its activating kinase IKKβ are associated with inflammation and are believed to be critical for innate immunity. Despite the likelihood of immune suppression, pharmacological blockade of IKKβ-NF-κB has been considered as a therapeutic strategy. However, we found neutrophilia in mice with inducible deletion of IKKβ (Ikkβ(Δ) mice). These mice had hyperproliferative granulocyte-macrophage progenitors and pregranulocytes and a prolonged lifespan of mature neutrophils that correlated with the induction of genes encoding prosurvival molecules. Deletion of interleukin 1 receptor 1 (IL-1R1) in Ikkβ(Δ) mice normalized blood cellularity and prevented neutrophil-driven inflammation. However, Ikkβ(Δ)Il1r1(-/-) mice, unlike Ikkβ(Δ) mice, were highly susceptible to bacterial infection, which indicated that signaling via IKKβ-NF-κB or IL-1R1 can maintain antimicrobial defenses in each other's absence, whereas inactivation of both pathways severely compromises innate immunity.

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