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Methods. 2013 Jun 1;61(2):110-6. doi: 10.1016/j.ymeth.2013.02.010. Epub 2013 Feb 27.

Evaluation of pyroptosis in macrophages using cytosolic delivery of purified flagellin.

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Centro de Terapia Celular e Molecular (CTC-Mol), Universidade Federal de São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.


Pyroptosis is a molecularly controlled form of cell death that exhibits some features of apoptosis as well of necrosis. Pyroptosis is induced by inflammasome-activated caspase-1 or caspase-11 (caspase-4 in humans), as a result of distinct pathogenic or damage stimuli. Although pyroptosis displays some morphological and biochemical features of apoptosis, it has an inflammatory outcome due to the loss of plasma membrane integrity and the consequent release of intracellular contents, reminiscent to necrosis. Here, we use cytosolic delivery of purified flagellin as an experimental tool to trigger pyroptosis and describe potential methods to study this form of cell death. Finally, we discuss the advantages and limitations of these methods.

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