Caspase-8 modulates dectin-1 and complement receptor 3-driven IL-1β production in response to β-glucans and the fungal pathogen, Candida albicans

Sandhya Ganesan, Vijay A.K. Rathinam, Lukas Bossaller, Kelly Army, William J. Kaiser, Edward S. Mocarski, Christopher P. Dillon, Douglas R. Green, Tanya N. Mayadas, Stuart M. Levitz, Amy G. Hise, Neal Silverman, Katherine A. Fitzgerald

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


Inflammasomes are central mediators of host defense to a wide range of microbial pathogens. The nucleotide-binding domain and leucine-rich repeat containing family (NLR), pyrin domain-containing 3 (NLRP3) inflammasome plays a key role in triggering caspase-1-dependent IL-1β maturation and resistance to fungal dissemination in Candida albicans infection. β-Glucans are major components of fungal cell walls that trigger IL-1β secretion in both murine and human immune cells. In this study, we sought to determine the contribution of β-glucans to C. albicans-induced inflammasome responses in mouse dendritic cells. We show that the NLRP3-apoptosis-associated speck-like protein containing caspase recruitment domain protein-caspase-1 inflammasome is absolutely critical for IL-1β production in response to β-glucans. Interestingly, we also found that both complement receptor 3 (CR3) and dectin-1 play a crucial role in coordinating β-glucan-induced IL-1β processing as well as a cell death response. In addition to the essential role of caspase-1, we identify an important role for the proapoptotic protease caspase-8 in promoting β-glucan-induced cell death and NLRP3 inflammasome-dependent IL-1β maturation. A strong requirement for CR3 and caspase-8 also was found for NLRP3-dependent IL-1β production in response to heat-killed C. albicans. Taken together, these results define the importance of dectin-1, CR3, and caspase-8, in addition to the canonical NLRP3 inflammasome, in mediating β-glucan-and C. albicans-induced innate responses in dendritic cells. Collectively, these findings establish a novel link between β-glucan recognition receptors and the inflammatory proteases caspase-8 and caspase-1 in coordinating cytokine secretion and cell death in response to immunostimulatory fungal components.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2519-2530
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2014
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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