The PYHIN protein family as mediators of host defenses

UMMS Affiliation

Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Program in Immunology & Virology; Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases and Immunology



Document Type



Immunity, Innate; DNA; Nuclear Proteins; Inflammasomes; Interferons; Interferon Type I


The innate immune response is the first line of defense against infection and relies on the ability of immune cells to detect the presence of infection through germline-encoded pattern recognition receptors. These include the Toll-like receptors, the retinoic acid inducible gene-like receptors, the nucleotide oligomerization domain-like receptors, and a number of DNA-sensing molecules. Members of the PYHIN protein family have recently emerged as sensors of microbial DNA. PYHIN proteins bind microbial DNA and form caspase-1-activating inflammasomes (AIM2) or drive type I IFN gene transcription (IFI16). Here, we review these discoveries and highlight the emerging role of the PYHIN protein family in mammalian host defenses.

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Citation: Schattgen SA, Fitzgerald KA. (2011). The PYHIN protein family as mediators of host defenses. Immunol Rev. 2011 Sep;243(1):109-18. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-065X.2011.01053.x.

Related Resources

Link to article in PubMed


DNA, innate immunity, PYHINs, inflammasomes, interferon

PubMed ID