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Blood. 2011 Jun 2;117(22):5953-62. doi: 10.1182/blood-2010-11-322206. Epub 2011 Apr 8.

A novel TNFR1-triggered apoptosis pathway mediated by class IA PI3Ks in neutrophils.

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Institute of Pharmacology, University of Bern, Friedbuehlstrasse 49, Bern, Switzerland.


The most common form of neutrophil death is apoptosis. In the present study, we report surprising differences in the molecular mechanisms used for caspase activation between FAS/CD95-stimulated and TNF receptor 1 (TNFR1)-stimulated neutrophils. Whereas FAS-induced apoptosis was followed by caspase-8 activation and required Bid to initiate the mitochondrial amplification loop, TNF-α-induced apoptosis involved class IA PI3Ks, which were activated by MAPK p38. TNF-α-induced PI3K activation resulted in the generation of reactive oxygen species, which activated caspase-3, a mechanism that did not operate in neutrophils without active NADPH oxidase. We conclude that in neutrophils, proapoptotic pathways after TNFR1 stimulation are initiated by p38 and PI3K, but not by caspase-8, a finding that should be considered in anti-inflammatory drug-development strategies.

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