Eicosanoid storm in infection and inflammation

Nat Rev Immunol. 2015 Aug;15(8):511-23. doi: 10.1038/nri3859. Epub 2015 Jul 3.


Controlled immune responses to infection and injury involve complex molecular signalling networks with coordinated and often opposing actions. Eicosanoids and related bioactive lipid mediators derived from polyunsaturated fatty acids constitute a major bioactive lipid network that is among the most complex and challenging pathways to map in a physiological context. Eicosanoid signalling, similar to cytokine signalling and inflammasome formation, has primarily been viewed as a pro-inflammatory component of the innate immune response; however, recent advances in lipidomics have helped to elucidate unique eicosanoids and related docosanoids with anti-inflammatory and pro-resolution functions. This has advanced our overall understanding of the inflammatory response and its therapeutic implications. The induction of a pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory eicosanoid storm through the activation of inflammatory receptors by infectious agents is reviewed here.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bacterial Infections / genetics
  • Bacterial Infections / immunology*
  • Bacterial Infections / microbiology
  • Bacterial Infections / pathology
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / genetics
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System / immunology
  • Cytokines / immunology
  • Cytokines / metabolism
  • Eicosanoids / biosynthesis
  • Eicosanoids / immunology*
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Innate*
  • Inflammation / genetics
  • Inflammation / immunology
  • Inflammation / pathology
  • Inflammation Mediators / immunology*
  • Inflammation Mediators / metabolism
  • Lipid Metabolism / immunology*
  • Phospholipases / genetics
  • Phospholipases / immunology
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases / genetics
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases / immunology
  • Signal Transduction


  • Cytokines
  • Eicosanoids
  • Inflammation Mediators
  • Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases
  • Phospholipases