Reconstruction of the Mouse Inflammasome System in HEK293T Cells

Bio Protoc. 2016 Nov 5;6(21):e1986. doi: 10.21769/BioProtoc.1986.


The NLRP3 (NLR family, Pyrin domain containing 3) inflammasome is a multiprotein complex comprised of NLRP3, pro-caspase-1, the adaptor protein apoptosis-associated speck-like protein containing a CARD (ASC), and the protein kinase NIMA related kinase 7 (NEK7) (Shi et al., 2016; He et al., 2016; Schmid-Burgk et al., 2016). When cells are exposed to microbes and/or danger signals, the inflammasome assembles and serves as a platform for the activation of caspase-1. Caspase-1 activation promotes the processing and secretion of the pro-inflammatory cytokines interleukin-1β (IL-1β), IL-18, and IL-33 as well as pyroptosis induction (Gross et al., 2011; Arend et al., 2008), which elicit inflammatory responses. Here, we describe how to co-transfect the NLRP3 inflammasome components into HEK293T cells, which enables inflammasome activation and the production of IL-1β upon stimulation with nigericin.