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AIM2 controls microglial inflammation to prevent experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis

Ma, C;Li, S;Hu, Y;Ma, Y;Wu, Y;Wu, C;Liu, X;Wang, B;Hu, G;Zhou, J;Yang, S;

The role of the PYHIN family member absent in melanoma 2 (AIM2), another important inflammasome sensor, in EAE remains unclear. In this study, we found that AIM2 negatively regulates the pathogenesis of EAE independent of inflammasome activation. AIM2 deficiency enhanced microglia activation and infiltration of peripheral immune cells into the CNS, thereby promoting neuroinflammation and demyelination during EAE. Mechanistically, AIM2 negatively regulates the DNA-PK-AKT3 in microglia to control neuroinflammation synergistically induced by cGAS and DNA-PK. Administration of a DNA-PK inhibitor reduced the severity of the EAE. Collectively, these findings identify a new role for AIM2 in controlling the onset of EAE. Furthermore, delineation of the underlying inflammasome-independent mechanism highlights cGAS and DNA-PK signaling as potential targets for the treatment of heterogeneous MS.