The importance of innate immunity in host defense and inflammatory responses has been clearly demonstrated after the discovery of innate immune receptors such as Toll-like receptors (TLRs) or Nucleotide-binding oligomerization domain-containing protein (Nod)-like receptors (NLRs). Innate immunity also plays a critical role in diverse pathological conditions including autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes (T1D). In particular, the role of a variety of innate immune receptors in T1D has been demonstrated using mice with targeted disruption of such innate immune receptors. Here, we discuss recent findings showing the role of innate immunity in T1D that were obtained mostly from studies of genetic mouse models of innate immune receptors. In addition, the role of innate immune receptors involved in the pathogenesis of T1D in sensing death-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) released from dead cells or pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs) will also be covered. Elucidation of the role of innate immune receptors in T1D and the nature of DAMPs sensed by such receptors may lead to the development of new therapeutic modalities against T1D.

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