A list of common terms in the Hyperlane protocol


Hyperlane Agents are off-chain actors that read and write Hyperlane smart contract state.

Example agents include Validators and Relayers.

Aggregation ISM

The Aggregation ISM is a type of interchain security module that aggregates security from many Interchain security modules (ISMs) by requiring that m of n ISMs verify a particular interchain message.


A checkpoint is a (merkle root, index) tuple, corresponding to the state of the incremental merkle tree at a particular point in time.

Checkpoints signatures by s are used in s.

Collateral chain

For a , the chain on which the is deposited into the warp route. Read more about Warp Routes

Collateral token

For a , the token which is deposited on the to create a wrapped token on a remote .

Read more about Warp Routes

Default ISM

The that will be used to verify inbound messages if the message recipient has not specified their own ISM. See Default ISM settings to see the current configurations.


A unique identifier for a particular chain, used by the Hyperlane protocol to determine message origin and destination. May be the same as the EVM chain ID, but isn't always. See Domain identifiers for a list of known Hyperlane domain IDs.

Interchain accounts (ICA)

A smart contract that allows users to make interchain smart contract calls. For example, DAOs can use interchain accounts to own contracts on remote chains. See Accounts API for more information.

Interchain gas paymaster

A smart contract deployed by a that accepts payments on an origin chain for message delivery on destination chains. See Interchain gas payments for more information

Interchain queries (IQS)

A smart contract that allows users to make interchain view calls. For example, smart contracts can use interchain queries to look up oracle exchange rates or token balances from a remote chain. See Queries API for more information.

Interchain security module

Interchain security modules (ISMs) are smart contracts that provide security to Hyperlane's interchain Messaging API. ISMs are responsible for verifying that interchain messages being delivered on the destination chain were actually sent on the origin chain.


Arguably the most important Hyperlane smart contract, the Mailbox exposes an API that developers can use to Send and Receive interchain messages.


A smart contract that sends and receives messages, and exposes a developer facing API. Developers are expected use this API instead of interacting directly with the . Example middlewares include and

Multisig ISM

The Multisig ISM is a type of that uses m of n signatures in order to verify a particular interchain message.


Relayers are Hyperlane s responsible for delivering messages from their origin chain(s) to their destination chain(s). Relayers are untrusted, and anyone can operate a relayer.

Routing ISM

The Routing ISM is a type of that defers to a different ISM depending on the message being delivered. For example, a Routing ISM could use a different ISM depending on the origin chain from which the message was sent.

Synthetic chain

For a , a chain on which wrapped tokens are minted. These wrapped tokens are backed by s that have been locked on the . Read more about Warp Routes


Validators are Hyperlane s responsible for attesting to messages sent from an origin chain. s use validator signatures to provide security for inbound messages.

Warp route

Warp Routes are Hyperlane's take on the concept of token bridging, allowing you to permissionlessly transfer any ERC20-like asset to any chain via Hyperlane.

Last updated