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Autoimmune Diseases
Volume 2013, Article ID 859145, 8 pages
Review Article

NLRP3 Inflammasome and MS/EAE

1Department of Immunology, Duke University Medical Center, DUMC-3010, Durham, NC 27710, USA
2Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, Duke University Medical Center, DUMC-3010, Durham, NC 27710, USA

Received 1 August 2012; Accepted 12 November 2012

Academic Editor: Giovanni Savettieri

Copyright © 2013 Makoto Inoue and Mari L. Shinohara. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Inflammasomes are cytosolic sensors that detect pathogens and danger signals in the innate immune system. The NLRP3 inflammasome is currently the most fully characterized inflammasome and is known to detect a wide array of microbes and endogenous damage-associated molecules. Possible involvement of the NLRP3 inflammasome (or inflammasomes) in the development of multiple sclerosis (MS) was suggested in a number of studies. Recent studies showed that the NLRP3 inflammasome exacerbates experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), an animal model of MS, although EAE can also develop without the NLRP3 inflammasome. In this paper, we discuss the NLRP3 inflammasome in MS and EAE development.