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PLoS Pathog. 2011 Jan 20;7(1):e1001259. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1001259.

Selective C-Rel activation via Malt1 controls anti-fungal T(H)-17 immunity by dectin-1 and dectin-2.

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Center of Infection and Immunity Amsterdam and Center for Experimental and Molecular Medicine, Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


C-type lectins dectin-1 and dectin-2 on dendritic cells elicit protective immunity against fungal infections through induction of T(H)1 and T(H)-17 cellular responses. Fungal recognition by dectin-1 on human dendritic cells engages the CARD9-Bcl10-Malt1 module to activate NF-κB. Here we demonstrate that Malt1 recruitment is pivotal to T(H)-17 immunity by selective activation of NF-κB subunit c-Rel, which induces expression of T(H)-17-polarizing cytokines IL-1β and IL-23p19. Malt1 inhibition abrogates c-Rel activation and T(H)-17 immunity to Candida species. We found that Malt1-mediated activation of c-Rel is similarly essential to induction of T(H)-17-polarizing cytokines by dectin-2. Whereas dectin-1 activates all NF-κB subunits, dectin-2 selectively activates c-Rel, signifying a specialized T(H)-17-enhancing function for dectin-2 in anti-fungal immunity by human dendritic cells. Thus, dectin-1 and dectin-2 control adaptive T(H)-17 immunity to fungi via Malt1-dependent activation of c-Rel.

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