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Detection of bacterial membrane vesicles by NOD-like receptors

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posted on 15.03.2021, 02:22 by Ella JohnstonElla Johnston, Begona HerasBegona Heras, TA Kufer, Maria LiaskosMaria Liaskos
© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. Bacterial membrane vesicles (BMVs) are nanoparticles produced by both Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria that can function to modulate immunity in the host. Both outer membrane vesicles (OMVs) and membrane vesicles (MVs), which are released by Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria, respectively, contain cargo derived from their parent bacterium, including immune stimulating molecules such as proteins, lipids and nucleic acids. Of these, peptidoglycan (PG) and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) are able to activate host innate immune pattern recognition receptors (PRRs), known as NOD-like receptors (NLRs), such as nucleotide-binding oligomerisation domain-containing protein (NOD) 1, NOD2 and NLRP3. NLR activation is a key driver of inflammation in the host, and BMVs derived from both pathogenic and commensal bacteria have been shown to package PG and LPS in order to modulate the host immune response using NLR-dependent mechanisms. Here, we discuss the packaging of immunostimulatory cargo within OMVs and MVs, their detection by NLRs and the cytokines produced by host cells in response to their detection. Additionally, commensal derived BMVs are thought to shape immunity and contribute to homeostasis in the gut, therefore we also highlight the interactions of commensal derived BMVs with NLRs and their roles in limiting inflammatory diseases.


This work was supported by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) grant #57445802 (T.A.K. and M.K.-L.), the Australian Research Council Project Grant DP1107800 (M.K.-L.); and a La Trobe University RFA Understanding Diseases Grant (M.K.-L., B.H.). M.K.-L. is supported by a veski Inspiring Women Fellowship.


Publication Date



International Journal of Molecular Sciences





Article Number

ARTN 1005


(p. 1-14)





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