Interleukin-1β (IL-1β) is a key orchestrator of anti-microbial immunity whose secretion is typically dependent on activation of inflammasomes. However, many pathogens have evolved strategies to evade inflammasome activation. Here we describe an alternative, two-cell model for IL-1β release where invariant natural killer T (iNKT) cells use the death receptor pathway to instruct antigen-presenting cells to secrete IL-1β. Following cognate interactions with TLR-primed bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (BMDCs), iNKT cells rapidly translocate intracellular Fas ligand to the surface to engage Fas on BMDCs. Fas ligation activates a caspase-8-dependent signaling cascade in BMDCs that drives IL-1β release largely independent of inflammasomes. The apoptotic program initiated by Fas ligation rapidly transitions into a pyroptosis-like form of cell death mediated by gasdermin D. Together, our findings support a two-cell model for IL-1β secretion that may supersede inflammasome activation when cytosolic triggers fail.
Keywords: Fas; Fas ligand; NKT cell; apoptosis; caspase; cell death; gasdermin; inflammasome; interleukin-1; pyroptosis.
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