Danger-Associated Molecular Patterns Derived From the Extracellular Matrix Provide Temporal Control of Innate Immunity

J Histochem Cytochem. 2018 Apr;66(4):213-227. doi: 10.1369/0022155417740880. Epub 2018 Jan 1.


It is evident that components of the extracellular matrix (ECM) act as danger-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) through direct interactions with pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) including Toll-like receptors (TLRs) and inflammasomes. Through these interactions, ECM-derived DAMPs autonomously trigger sterile inflammation or prolong pathogen-induced responses through the production of proinflammatory mediators and the recruitment of leukocytes to sites of injury and infection. Recent research, however, suggests that ECM-derived DAMPs are additionally involved in the resolution and fine-tuning of inflammation by orchestrating the production of anti-inflammatory mediators that are required for the resolution of tissue inflammation and the transition to acquired immunity. Thus, in this review, we discuss the current knowledge of the interplay between ECM-derived DAMPs and the innate immune signaling pathways that are activated to provide temporal control of innate immunity.

Keywords: Toll-like receptors (TLRs); biglycan; decorin; extracellular matrix; hyaluronan; inflammasome; inflammation; innate immunity; versican.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Alarmins / immunology*
  • Animals
  • Extracellular Matrix / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Innate*
  • Inflammasomes / immunology
  • Inflammation / immunology
  • Receptor for Advanced Glycation End Products / immunology
  • Signal Transduction
  • Toll-Like Receptors / immunology
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta / immunology


  • Alarmins
  • Inflammasomes
  • Receptor for Advanced Glycation End Products
  • Toll-Like Receptors
  • Transforming Growth Factor beta