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J Virol. 2011 Dec;85(23):12505-17. doi: 10.1128/JVI.00410-11. Epub 2011 Sep 28.

Myxoma virus lacking the pyrin-like protein M013 is sensed in human myeloid cells by both NLRP3 and multiple Toll-like receptors, which independently activate the inflammasome and NF-κB innate response pathways.

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Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, University of Florida, 1600 SW Archer Road, Gainesville, FL 32610, USA.


The myxoma virus (MYXV)-encoded pyrin domain-containing protein M013 coregulates inflammatory responses mediated by both the inflammasome and the NF-κB pathways. Infection of human THP-1 monocytic cells with a MYXV construct deleted for the M013 gene (vMyxM013-KO), but not the parental MYXV, activates both the inflammasome and NF-κB pathways and induces a spectrum of proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines, like interleukin-1β (IL-1β), tumor necrosis factor (TNF), IL-6, and monocyte chemoattractant protein 1. Here, we report that vMyxM013-KO virus-mediated activation of inflammasomes and secretion of IL-1β are dependent on the adaptor protein ASC, caspase-1, and NLRP3 receptor. However, vMyxM013-KO virus-mediated activation of NF-κB signaling, which induces TNF secretion, was independent of ASC, caspase-1, and either the NLRP3 or AIM2 inflammasome receptors. We also report that early synthesis of pro-IL-1β in response to vMyxM013-KO infection is dependent upon the components of the inflammasome complex. Activation of the NLRP3 inflammasome and secretion of IL-1β was also dependent on the release of cathepsin B and production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). By using small interfering RNA screening, we further demonstrated that, among the RIG-I-like receptors (RLRs) and Toll-like receptors (TLRs), only TLR2, TLR6, TLR7, and TLR9 contribute to the NF-κB-dependent secretion of TNF and the inflammasome-dependent secretion of IL-1β in response to vMyxM013-KO virus infection. Additionally, we demonstrate that early triggering of the mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway by vMyxM013-KO virus infection of THP-1 cells plays a critical common upstream role in the coordinate induction of both NF-κB and inflammasome pathways. We conclude that an additional cellular sensor(s)/receptor(s) in addition to the known RLRs/TLRs plays a role in the M013 knockout virus-induced activation of NF-κB pathway signaling, but the activation of inflammasomes entirely depends on sensing by the NLRP3 receptor in response to vMyxM013-KO infection of human myeloid cells.

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