Although type 1 innate lymphoid cells (ILC1s) have been originally found as liver-resident ILCs, their pathophysiological role in the liver remains poorly investigated. Here, we demonstrated that carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) injection into mice activated ILC1s, but not natural killer (NK) cells, in the liver. Activated ILC1s produced interferon-γ (IFN-γ) and protected mice from CCl4-induced acute liver injury. IFN-γ released from activated ILC1s promoted the survival of hepatocytes through upregulation of Bcl-xL. An activating NK receptor, DNAM-1, was required for the optimal activation and IFN-γ production of liver ILC1s. Extracellular adenosine triphosphate accelerated interleukin-12-driven IFN-γ production by liver ILC1s. These findings suggest that ILC1s are critical for tissue protection during acute liver injury.
Keywords: ATP; Bcl-xL; CCl(4); DNAM-1; IFN-γ; IL-12; IL-7; ILC1; acute liver injury; hepatocyte.
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