Recently, a large subfamily of nucleotide-binding and oligomerization domain-containing proteins that have an N-terminal pyrin-like domain and C-terminal leucine-rich repeats has been described. In this study, we identified PYNOD, a novel member of this family that lacks the leucine-rich repeats. We found that human PYNOD mRNA is expressed in various tissues and at high levels in heart, skeletal muscle and brain. It is also expressed in various cell lines, including haematopoietic cell lines. PYNOD oligomerizes and binds to ASC, an adaptor protein that plays a role in apoptotic and inflammatory signal transduction, and to caspase-1 and IL-1beta. PYNOD inhibits apoptosis-associated speck-like protein containing a CARD (ASC)-mediated NF-kappaB activation and apoptosis, and caspase-1-mediated IL-1beta maturation, and it does so in the presence and absence of constitutively active mutants of CARD12 and PYPAF1, which are enhancers of these processes. Thus, PYNOD is a novel regulator of apoptosis and inflammation.
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