c-FLIP maintains tissue homeostasis by preventing apoptosis and programmed necrosis.
As a catalytically inactive homolog of caspase-8, a proapoptotic initiator caspase, c-FLIP blocks apoptosis by binding to and inhibiting caspase-8. The transcription factor nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) plays a pivotal role in maintaining the homeostasis of the intestine and the liver by preventing death receptor-induced apoptosis, and c-FLIP plays a role in the NF-κB-dependent protection of cells from death receptor signaling. Because c-Flip-deficient mice die in utero, we generated conditional c-Flip-deficient mice to investigate the contribution of c-FLIP to homeostasis of the intestine and the liver at developmental and postnatal stages. Intestinal epithelial cell (IEC)- or hepatocyte-specific deletion of c-Flip resulted in perinatal lethality as a result of the enhanced apoptosis and programmed necrosis of the IECs and the hepatocytes. Deficiency in the gene encoding tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) receptor 1 (Tnfr1) partially rescued perinatal lethality and the development of colitis in IEC-specific c-Flip-deficient mice but did not rescue perinatal lethality in hepatocyte-specific c-Flip-deficient mice. Moreover, adult mice with interferon (IFN)-inducible deficiency in c-Flip died from hepatitis soon after depletion of c-FLIP. Pretreatment of IFN-inducible c-Flip-deficient mice with a mixture of neutralizing antibodies against TNF-α, Fas ligand (FasL), and TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) prevented hepatitis. Together, these results suggest that c-FLIP controls the homeostasis of IECs and hepatocytes by preventing cell death induced by TNF-α, FasL, and TRAIL.
Piao, X; Komazawa-Sakon, S; Nishina, T; Koike, M; Piao, J-H; Ehlken, H; Kurihara, H; Hara, M; Van Rooijen, N; Schütz, G; Ohmuraya, M; Uchiyama, Y; Yagita, H; Okumura, K; He, Y-W; Nakano, H
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