Caspase-10 affects the pathogenesis of primary biliary cholangitis by regulating inflammatory cell death

Minjeong Cho, So Hee Dho, Saeam Shin, Yeongun Lee, Yoonjung Kim, Jiyeon Lee, Su Jong Yu, Sang Hoon Park, Kyung A. Lee, Lark Kyun Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Primary biliary cholangitis (PBC) is an autoimmune disease that involves chronic inflammation and injury to biliary epithelial cells. To identify critical genetic factor(s) in PBC patients, we performed whole-exome sequencing of five female siblings, including one unaffected and four affected sisters, in a multi-PBC family, and identified 61 rare heterozygote variants that segregated only within the affected sisters. Among them, we were particularly interested in caspase-10, for although several caspases are involved in cell death, inflammation and autoimmunity, caspase-10 is little known from this perspective. We generated caspase-10 knockout macrophages, and then investigated the obtained phenotypes in comparison to those of its structurally similar protein, caspase-8. Unlike caspase-8, caspase-10 does not play a role during differentiation into macrophages, but after differentiation, it regulates the process of inflammatory cell deaths such as necroptosis and pyroptosis more strongly. Interestingly, caspase-10 displays better protease activity than caspase-8 in the process of RIPK1 cleavage, and an enhanced ability to form a complex with RIPK1 and FADD in human macrophages. Higher inflammatory cell death affected the fibrotic response of hepatic stellate cells; this effect could be recovered by treatment with UDCA and OCA, which are currently approved for PBC patients. Our findings strongly indicate that the defective roles of caspase-10 in macrophages contribute to the pathogenesis of PBC, thereby suggesting a new therapeutic strategy for PBC treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102940
JournalJournal of Autoimmunity
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Dec

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank all members of Prof. Lark Kyun Kim's lab for helping the experiments and critical reading of the manuscript. This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government ( MSIT ) ( NRF-2021R1A4A5032185 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Author(s)

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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