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Sci Signal. 2012 Dec 18;5(255):ra93. doi: 10.1126/scisignal.2003558.

c-FLIP maintains tissue homeostasis by preventing apoptosis and programmed necrosis.

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1
Department of Immunology, Juntendo University Graduate School of Medicine, 2-1-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8421, Japan.

Abstract

As a catalytically inactive homolog of caspase-8, a proapoptotic initiator caspase, c-FLIP blocks apoptosis by binding to and inhibiting caspase-8. The transcription factor nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) plays a pivotal role in maintaining the homeostasis of the intestine and the liver by preventing death receptor-induced apoptosis, and c-FLIP plays a role in the NF-κB-dependent protection of cells from death receptor signaling. Because c-Flip-deficient mice die in utero, we generated conditional c-Flip-deficient mice to investigate the contribution of c-FLIP to homeostasis of the intestine and the liver at developmental and postnatal stages. Intestinal epithelial cell (IEC)- or hepatocyte-specific deletion of c-Flip resulted in perinatal lethality as a result of the enhanced apoptosis and programmed necrosis of the IECs and the hepatocytes. Deficiency in the gene encoding tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) receptor 1 (Tnfr1) partially rescued perinatal lethality and the development of colitis in IEC-specific c-Flip-deficient mice but did not rescue perinatal lethality in hepatocyte-specific c-Flip-deficient mice. Moreover, adult mice with interferon (IFN)-inducible deficiency in c-Flip died from hepatitis soon after depletion of c-FLIP. Pretreatment of IFN-inducible c-Flip-deficient mice with a mixture of neutralizing antibodies against TNF-α, Fas ligand (FasL), and TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) prevented hepatitis. Together, these results suggest that c-FLIP controls the homeostasis of IECs and hepatocytes by preventing cell death induced by TNF-α, FasL, and TRAIL.

PMID:
23250397
PMCID:
PMC4465294
DOI:
10.1126/scisignal.2003558
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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