Barrier epithelia that are persistently exposed to microbes have evolved potent immune tools to eliminate such pathogens. If mechanisms that control Drosophila systemic responses are well-characterized, the epithelial immune responses remain poorly understood. Here, we performed a genetic dissection of the cascades activated during the immune response of the Drosophila airway epithelium i.e. trachea. We present evidence that bacteria induced-antimicrobial peptide (AMP) production in the trachea is controlled by two signalling cascades. AMP gene transcription is activated by the inducible IMD pathway that acts non-cell autonomously in trachea. This IMD-dependent AMP activation is antagonized by a constitutively active signalling module involving the receptor Toll-8/Tollo, the ligand Spätzle2/DNT1 and Ect-4, the Drosophila ortholog of the human Sterile alpha and HEAT/ARMadillo motif (SARM). Our data show that, in addition to Toll-1 whose function is essential during the systemic immune response, Drosophila relies on another Toll family member to control the immune response in the respiratory epithelium.