Looking into the IL-1 of the storm: Are inflammasomes the link between immunothrombosis and hyperinflammation in cytokine storm syndromes?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

  • External authors:
  • Tara Gleeson
  • Erik Nordling
  • Christina Kaiser


Inflammasomes and the interleukin (IL)-1 family of cytokines are key mediators of both inflammation and immunothrombosis. Inflammasomes are responsible for the release of the pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-1β and IL-18, as well as releasing tissue factor (TF), a pivotal initiator of the extrinsic coagulation cascade. Uncontrolled production of inflammatory cytokines results in what is known as a “cytokine storm” leading to hyperinflammatory disease. Cytokine storms can complicate a variety of diseases and results in hypercytokinemia, coagulopathies, tissue damage, multi-organ failure and death. Patients presenting with cytokine storm syndromes have a high mortality rate, driven in part by disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC). Whilst our knowledge on the factors propagating cytokine storms is increasing, how cytokine storm influences DIC remains unknown, and therefore treatments for diseases, where these aspects are a key feature are limited, with most targeting specific cytokines. Currently, no therapies target the immunothrombosis aspect of hyperinflammatory syndromes. Here we discuss how targeting the inflammasome and pyroptosis may be a novel therapeutic strategy for the treatment of hyperinflammation and its associated pathologies.

Bibliographical metadata

Original languageEnglish
JournalDiscovery Immunology
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 24 Aug 2022