Live and let die: ZBP1 senses viral and cellular RNAs to trigger necroptosis

EMBO J. 2017 Sep 1;36(17):2470-2472. doi: 10.15252/embj.201797845. Epub 2017 Aug 18.


Necroptosis is a programmed form of inflammatory cell death involved in various pathologies, such as viral infections. In two new papers published in The EMBO Journal and EMBO Reports, Z‐DNA binding protein 1 (ZBP1) is now shown to sense RNAs during viral infection or after caspase inhibition and activate necroptosis. This may suggest that Z‐RNAs are molecular patterns for activation of necroptosis.

Publication types

  • Comment

MeSH terms

  • Apoptosis*
  • Humans
  • RNA*


  • RNA