An understanding of common human diversity in innate immune pathways should be beneficial in understanding autoimmune diseases, susceptibility to infection, and choices of anti-inflammatory treatment. Such understanding could also result in definition of currently unknown components of human inflammation pathways. A cellular genome-wide association studies (GWAS) platform, termed Hi-HOST (Hi
uman in vitro s
esting), was developed to assay in vitro
cellular phenotypes of infection in genotyped lymphoblastoid cells from genetically diverse human populations. Hi-HOST allows for measurement of multiple host and pathogen parameters of infection/inflammation including: bacterial invasion and intracellular replication, host cell death, and cytokine production. Hi-HOST has been used to successfully define a significant portion of the heritable human diversity in inflammatory cell death in response to Salmonella typhimurium
. It also led to the discovery of genetic variants important to protection against systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) and protection against death and bacteremia in individuals with SIRS. Our laboratory is currently using this platform to define human diversity in autophagy and the NLPR3 inflammasome pathways, and to define new components that can impact the expression of phenotypes related to these pathways.
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