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Research Project: Pathogenesis and Development of Improved Diagnostic and Control Strategies for Brucellosis in Livestock and Wildlife

Location: Infectious Bacterial Diseases Research

Title: Inflammasomes in livestock and wildlife: Insights into the intersection of pathogens and natural host species

item Vrentas, Catherine
item SCHAUT, ROBERT - US Department Of Agriculture (USDA)
item Boggiatto, Paola
item Olsen, Steven
item SUTTERWALA, FAYYAZ - Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
item MOAYERI, MAHTAB - National Institutes Of Health (NIH)

Submitted to: Veterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/14/2018
Publication Date: 6/1/2018
Citation: Vrentas, C.E., Schaut, R.G., Boggiatto, P.M., Olsen, S.C., Sutterwala, F.G., Moayeri, M. 2018. Inflammasomes in livestock and wildlife: Insights into the intersection of pathogens and natural host species. Veterinary Immunology and Immunopathology. 201:49-56.

Interpretive Summary: The inflammasome is a mechanism by which cells in the body, especially specific cells in the immune system, respond to damage or danger, including invasion of disease-causing bacteria in the body. Activation of the inflammasome can contribute to the body's early responses to dangers like viruses or bacteria, but too much activation (and associated downstream effects) can lead to tissue damage and other negative consequences. There are multiple types of inflammasomes, designed to detect different types of signals of pathogens or damage. However, most of the work characterizing inflammasomes has been on mice and humans. Here, we provide a literature review of research that has been done on inflammasomes in veterinary species, including cattle, swine, bats, and dogs. In addition to summarizing past findings, we recommend new avenues of research for the future that may contribute to the development of new veterinary therapeutics and/or that may allow for increased understanding of differences in the immune responses between livestock species.

Technical Abstract: The inflammasome serves as a mechanism by which the body senses damage or danger. These multiprotein complexes form in the cytosol of myeloid, epithelial and potentially other cell types to drive caspase cleavage and the secretion of the pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1ß and IL-18. Different types of inflammasomes, centered on (and named after) their cytosolic Nod-like receptors (NLRs), respond to signals from bacteria, fungi, and viruses, as well as “sterile” triggers of inflammation. Despite the large body of research that has been accumulated on mouse and human inflammasomes over the past 15 years, only recently have studies expanded to consider the role of inflammasomes in responses of livestock and wildlife. Due to the key role of animals as hosts for pathogens which activate inflammasomes, an understanding of similarities and differences between human/mouse and other animal responses is important in characterizing pathogenesis in veterinary species, identifying genetic and evolutionary influences on disease responses, and developing therapeutic candidates for veterinary inflammatory syndromes. Here, we summarize recent findings on inflammasomes in swine, cattle, dogs, bats, and birds. We describe current gaps in our knowledge and highlight promising areas for future research, including the role of non-canonical inflammasome responses in livestock immunity.