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A GPCR-neuropeptide axis dampens hyperactive neutrophils by promoting an alternative-like polarization during bacterial infection

Published date

February 13, 2024


"The notion that neutrophils exist as a homogeneous population is being replaced with the knowledge that neutrophils adopt different functional states. Neutrophils can have a pro-inflammatory phenotype or an anti-inflammatory state, but how these states are regulated remains unclear. Here, we demonstrated that the neutrophil-expressed G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) Mrgpra1 is a negative regulator of neutrophil bactericidal functions. Mrgpra1-mediated signaling was driven by its ligand, neuropeptide FF (NPFF), which dictated the balance between pro- and anti-inflammatory programming. Specifically, the Mrgpra1-NPFF axis counter-regulated interferon (IFN) γ-mediated neutrophil polarization during acute lung infection by favoring an alternative-like polarization, suggesting that it may act to balance overzealous neutrophilic responses. Distinct, cross-regulated populations of neutrophils were the primary source of NPFF and IFNγ during infection. As a subset of neutrophils at steady state expressed NPFF, these findings could have broad implications in various infectious and inflammatory diseases. Therefore, a neutrophil-intrinsic pathway determines their cellular fate, function, and magnitude of infection."

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