Research ArticleImmunology

Interferon-β Therapy Against EAE Is Effective Only When Development of the Disease Depends on the NLRP3 Inflammasome

Sci. Signal.  22 May 2012:
Vol. 5, Issue 225, pp. ra38
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.2002767

You are currently viewing the abstract.

View Full Text
As a service to the community, AAAS/Science has made this article free with registration.


Interferon-β (IFN-β) is widely used to treat multiple sclerosis (MS), and its efficacy was demonstrated in the setting of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), an animal model of MS; however, IFN-β is not effective in treating all cases of MS. Here, we demonstrate that signaling by IFNAR (the shared receptor for IFN-α and IFN-β) on macrophages inhibits activation of Rac1 and the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) through suppressor of cytokine signaling 1 (SOCS1). The inhibition of Rac1 activation and ROS generation suppressed the activity of the Nod-like receptor (NLR) family, pyrin domain–containing 3 (NLRP3) inflammasome, which resulted in attenuated EAE pathogenicity. We further found that two subsets of EAE could be defined on the basis of their dependency on the NLRP3 inflammasome and that IFN-β was not an effective therapy when EAE was induced in an NLRP3 inflammasome–independent fashion. Thus, our study demonstrates a previously uncharacterized signaling pathway that is involved in the suppression of EAE by IFN-β and characterizes NLRP3-independent EAE, which cannot be treated with IFN-β.

View Full Text