Double-stranded RNA of intestinal commensal but not pathogenic bacteria triggers production of protective interferon-β.


The small intestine harbors a substantial number of commensal bacteria and is sporadically invaded by pathogens, but the response to these microorganisms is fundamentally different. We identified a discriminatory sensor by using Toll-like receptor 3 (TLR3). Double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) of one major commensal species, lactic acid bacteria (LAB), triggered interferon-β (IFN-β) production, which protected mice from experimental colitis. The LAB-induced IFN-β response was diminished by dsRNA digestion and treatment with endosomal inhibitors. Pathogenic bacteria contained less dsRNA and induced much less IFN-β than LAB, and dsRNA was not involved in pathogen-induced IFN-β induction. These results identify TLR3 as a sensor to small intestinal commensal bacteria and suggest that dsRNA in commensal bacteria contributes to anti-inflammatory and protective immune responses.

DOI: 10.1016/j.immuni.2013.02.024

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@article{Kawashima2013DoublestrandedRO, title={Double-stranded RNA of intestinal commensal but not pathogenic bacteria triggers production of protective interferon-β.}, author={Tadaomi Kawashima and Akemi Kosaka and Huimin Yan and Zijin Guo and Ryosuke Uchiyama and Ryutaro Fukui and Daisuke Kaneko and Yutaro Kumagai and Dong-ju You and Joaquim Carreras and Satoshi Uematsu and Myoung Ho Jang and Osamu Takeuchi and Tsuneyasu Kaisho and Shizuo Akira and Kensuke Miyake and Hiroko Tsutsui and Takashi Saito and Ikuko Hara - Nishimura and Noriko M. Tsuji}, journal={Immunity}, year={2013}, volume={38 6}, pages={1187-97} }