Roles for ADAM17 in TNF-R1 Mediated Cell Death and Survival in Human U937 and Jurkat Cells

Signaling via death receptor family members such as TNF-R1 mediates pleiotropic biological outcomes ranging from inflammation and proliferation to cell death. Pro-survival signaling is mediated via TNF-R1 complex I at the cellular plasma membrane. Cell death induction requires complex IIa/b or necrosome formation, which occurs in the cytoplasm. In many cell types, full apoptotic or necroptotic cell death induction requires the internalization of TNF-R1 and receptosome formation to properly relay the signal inside the cell. We interrogated the role of the enzyme A disintegrin and metalloprotease 17 (ADAM17)/TACE (TNF-α converting enzyme) in death receptor signaling in human hematopoietic cells, using pharmacological inhibition and genetic ablation. We show that in U937 and Jurkat cells the absence of ADAM17 does not abrogate, but rather increases TNF mediated cell death. Likewise, cell death triggered via DR3 is enhanced in U937 cells lacking ADAM17. We identified ADAM17 as the key molecule that fine-tunes death receptor signaling. A better understanding of cell fate decisions made via the receptors of the TNF-R1 superfamily may enable us, in the future, to more efficiently treat infectious and inflammatory diseases or cancer.

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