Research ArticleVIRAL IMMUNOLOGY

IL-22–induced cell extrusion and IL-18–induced cell death prevent and cure rotavirus infection

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Science Immunology  02 Oct 2020:
Vol. 5, Issue 52, eabd2876
DOI: 10.1126/sciimmunol.abd2876

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Revenge against rotavirus

Rotavirus (RV) is an enteric infection that can cause severe morbidity and contributes to childhood mortality in resource-poor countries where the existing vaccine is of moderate efficacy. A previous study showed that TLR5-driven IL-22 production and NLRC4-mediated generation of IL-18 can work together to prevent or treat RV infection. Here, Zhang et al. show that IL-22 drives intestinal epithelial cell (IEC) proliferation and migration toward villus tips resulting in extrusion of differentiated IEC, which are sites of RV replication. IL-18 induces cell death of infected IEC, and together, these mechanisms accelerate clearance of RV from the intestine. These findings suggest that these cytokines may support clearance of other enteric viral infections.

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