STING Senses Microbial Viability to Orchestrate Stress-Mediated Autophagy of the Endoplasmic Reticulum Academic Article uri icon


MeSH Major

  • Apoptosis
  • Epithelial Cells
  • Homeostasis
  • Intestinal Mucosa
  • Phagocytes


  • Constitutive cell-autonomous immunity in metazoans predates interferon-inducible immunity and comprises primordial innate defense. Phagocytes mobilize interferon-inducible responses upon engagement of well-characterized signaling pathways by pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs). The signals controlling deployment of constitutive cell-autonomous responses during infection have remained elusive. Vita-PAMPs denote microbial viability, signaling the danger of cellular exploitation by intracellular pathogens. We show that cyclic-di-adenosine monophosphate in live Gram-positive bacteria is a vita-PAMP, engaging the innate sensor stimulator of interferon genes (STING) to mediate endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. Subsequent inactivation of the┬ámechanistic target of rapamycin mobilizes autophagy, which sequesters stressed ER membranes, resolves ER stress, and curtails phagocyte death. This vita-PAMP-induced ER-phagy additionally orchestrates an interferon response by localizing ER-resident STING to autophagosomes. Our findings identify stress-mediated ER-phagy as a cell-autonomous response mobilized by STING-dependent sensing of a specific vita-PAMP and elucidate how innate receptors engage multilayered homeostatic mechanisms to┬ápromote immunity and survival after infection.

publication date

  • January 2017



  • Academic Article



  • eng

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.cell.2017.09.034

PubMed ID

  • 29056340

Additional Document Info