Bacteria, the endoplasmic reticulum and the unfolded protein response: friends or foes?

Nat Rev Microbiol. 2015 Feb;13(2):71-82. doi: 10.1038/nrmicro3393. Epub 2014 Dec 15.


The unfolded protein response (UPR) is a cytoprotective response that is aimed at restoring cellular homeostasis following physiological stress exerted on the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), which also invokes innate immune signalling in response to invading microorganisms. Although it has been known for some time that the UPR is modulated by various viruses, recent evidence indicates that it also has multiple roles during bacterial infections. In this Review, we describe how bacteria interact with the ER, including how bacteria induce the UPR, how subversion of the UPR promotes bacterial proliferation and how the UPR contributes to innate immune responses against invading bacteria.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bacteria* / immunology
  • Bacterial Infections / immunology
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Endoplasmic Reticulum / microbiology*
  • Endoplasmic Reticulum / physiology*
  • Immunity, Innate / physiology*
  • Unfolded Protein Response / physiology*