Scientists show that a protein within immune cells stands poised to dampen inflammation, according to an article published online in Nature Immunology.
Inflammatory proteins are produced by immune cells following microbial infection. After clearance of the invading pathogen the inflammatory response must be switched off to avoid excessive damage to host tissues.
Tsuneyaso Kaisho and colleagues now demonstrate that a protein called PDLIM2 continuously targets the p65 subunit of the proinflammatory transcription factor NF-kB for destruction. PDLIM2 marks p65 for degradation and routes p65 into cellular compartments containing demolition machinery.
Consequently, mice lacking PDLIM2 suffer from lethal uncontrolled inflammation. These findings pinpoint another potential target for therapeutic efforts to suppress excessive inflammatory responses.
Tsuneyasho Kaisho (RIKEN Research Center for Allergy and Immunology, Kanagawa, Japan)
Abstract available online.
(C) Nature Immunology press release.
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