E-type prostanoid receptor 4 drives resolution of intestinal inflammation by blocking epithelial necroptosis
Nature Cell Biology, 2021
Inflammatory bowel diseases present with elevated levels of intestinal epithelial cell (IEC) death, which compromises the gut barrier, activating immune cells and triggering more IEC death. The endogenous signals that prevent IEC death and break this vicious cycle, allowing resolution of intestinal inflammation, remain largely unknown. Here we show that prostaglandin E2 signalling via the E-type prostanoid receptor 4 (EP4) on IECs represses epithelial necroptosis and induces resolution of colitis. We found that EP4 expression correlates with an improved IBD outcome and that EP4 activation induces a transcriptional signature consistent with resolution of intestinal inflammation. We further show that dysregulated necroptosis prevents resolution, and EP4 agonism suppresses necroptosis in human and mouse IECs. Mechanistically, EP4 signalling on IECs converges on receptor-interacting protein kinase 1 to suppress tumour necrosis factor-induced activation and membrane translocation of the necroptosis effector mixed-lineage kinase domain-like pseudokinase. In summary, our study indicates that EP4 promotes the resolution of colitis by suppressing IEC necroptosis.
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