A novel "complement-metabolism-inflammasome axis" as a key regulator of immune cell effector function

Eur J Immunol. 2016 Jul;46(7):1563-73. doi: 10.1002/eji.201546131. Epub 2016 Jun 8.


The inflammasomes are intracellular multiprotein complexes that induce and regulate the generation of the key pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1β and IL-18 in response to infectious microbes and cellular stress. The activation of inflammasomes involves several upstream signals including classic pattern or danger recognition systems such as the TLRs. Recently, however, the activation of complement receptors, such as the anaphylatoxin C3a and C5a receptors and the complement regulator CD46, in conjunction with the sensing of cell metabolic changes, for instance increased amino acid influx and glycolysis (via mTORC1), have emerged as additional critical activators of the inflammasome. This review summarizes recent advances in our knowledge about complement-mediated inflammasome activation, with a specific focus on a novel "complement - metabolism - NLRP3 inflammasome axis."

Keywords: Complement; Metabolism; NLRP3 inflammasome.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Complement Activation
  • Complement System Proteins / immunology*
  • Complement System Proteins / metabolism
  • Energy Metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Immune System / cytology*
  • Immune System / physiology*
  • Immunomodulation
  • Inflammasomes / metabolism*
  • NLR Family, Pyrin Domain-Containing 3 Protein / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction


  • Inflammasomes
  • NLR Family, Pyrin Domain-Containing 3 Protein
  • Complement System Proteins