Hepatic acute-phase proteins control innate immune responses during infection by promoting myeloid-derived suppressor cell function
Acute-phase proteins (APPs) are an evolutionarily conserved family of proteins produced mainly in the liver in response to infection and inflammation. Despite vast pro- and antiinflammatory properties ascribed to individual APPs, their collective function during infections remains poorly defined. Using a mouse model of polymicrobial sepsis, we show that abrogation of APP production by hepatocyte-specific gp130 deletion, the signaling receptor shared by IL-6 family cytokines, strongly increased mortality despite normal bacterial clearance. Hepatic gp130 signaling through STAT3 was required to control systemic inflammation. Notably, hepatic gp130-STAT3 activation was also essential for mobilization and tissue accumulation of myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs), a cell population mainly known for antiinflammatory properties in cancer. MDSCs were critical to regulate innate inflammation, and their adoptive transfer efficiently protected gp130-deficient mice from sepsis-associated mortality. The hepatic APPs serum amyloid A and Cxcl1/KC cooperatively promoted MDSC mobilization, accumulation, and survival, and reversed dysregulated inflammation and restored survival of gp130-deficient mice. Thus, gp130-dependent communication between the liver and MDSCs through APPs controls inflammatory responses during infection.