The NLRP3 inflammasome: a sensor of immune danger signals

Semin Immunol. 2009 Aug;21(4):194-8. doi: 10.1016/j.smim.2009.05.002. Epub 2009 Jun 5.


The innate immune system senses danger signals via evolutionary conserved receptors. The nucleotide-binding domain leucine-rich repeat containing receptor (NLR) family is a group of intracellular receptors that drive a wide variety of inflammatory responses. A number of the NLR family members can form inflammasomes, which are multiprotein complexes that can activate caspase-1 and ultimately lead to the processing and secretion of interleukin (IL)-1beta, IL-18 and IL-33. One of the best-studied members of the NLR family is NLRP3 for which a number of divergent activators have recently been described. These and other studies examining the NLRP3 inflammasome will be discussed in this review.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Transport
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / immunology*
  • Inflammation / metabolism
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / immunology*
  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction*
  • Vaccines / immunology


  • Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled
  • Vaccines