IL-33 facilitates rapid expulsion of the parasitic nematode Strongyloides ratti from the intestine via ILC2- and IL-9-driven mast cell activation

Jana Meiners, Martina Reitz, Nikolas Rüdiger, Jan-Eric Turner, Lennart Heepmann, Lena Rudolf, Wiebke Hartmann, Henry McSorley, Minka Breloer (Lead / Corresponding author)

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Parasitic helminths are sensed by the immune system via tissue-derived alarmins that promote the initiation of the appropriate type 2 immune responses. Here we establish the nuclear alarmin cytokine IL-33 as a non-redundant trigger of specifically IL-9-driven and mast cell-mediated immunity to the intestinal parasite Strongyloides ratti. Blockade of endogenous IL-33 using a helminth-derived IL-33 inhibitor elevated intestinal parasite burdens in the context of reduced mast cell activation while stabilization of endogenous IL-33 or application of recombinant IL-33 reciprocally reduced intestinal parasite burdens and increased mast cell activation. Using gene-deficient mice, we show that application of IL-33 triggered rapid mast cell-mediated expulsion of parasites directly in the intestine, independent of the adaptive immune system, basophils, eosinophils or Gr-1+ cells but dependent on functional IL-9 receptor and innate lymphoid cells (ILC). Thereby we connect the described axis of IL-33-mediated ILC2 expansion to the rapid initiation of IL-9-mediated and mast cell-driven intestinal anti-helminth immunity.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere1009121
Number of pages20
JournalPLoS Pathogens
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 22 Dec 2020


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