Innate immunity: When DNA is out of place

" In animal cells, DNA molecules are normally restricted to the cell nucleus and the mitochondria. When DNA appears outside these organelles -- in the so-called cytosol -- it most probably originates from a bacterial pathogen or a DNA virus. This is why cytosolic DNA triggers a strong response by the innate immune system. However, various types of insult can also lead to the release into the cytosol of the cell's own DNA. In this case, the resulting immune response may precipitate an autoimmune disease."

No comments: