Although multiple sclerosis (MS) patients and healthy individuals have similar frequencies of myelin basic protein (MBP)-specific T cells, the activation state of these cells has not been well characterized. Therefore, we investigated the dependence of MBP-reactive T cells on CD28-mediated costimulation in MS patients, healthy controls, and stroke patients. MBP-reactive T cells from healthy controls and stroke patients failed to proliferate efficiently when costimulation was blocked using anti-CD28, consistent with a naive T cell response. In contrast, MBP-specific T cell proliferation was not inhibited, or was only partially inhibited when CD28-mediated costimulation was blocked in MS patients. Blockade of CD28 failed to inhibit tetanus toxoid-specific T cell proliferation in both the controls and MS patients, demonstrating that memory cells are not dependent on CD28-mediated costimulation. Limiting dilution analysis indicated that the frequency of MBP-reactive T cells was significantly decreased in healthy controls compared with MS patients when CD28-mediated costimulation was blocked. These data suggest that MBP-reactive T cells are more likely to have been activated in vivo and/or differentiated into memory T cells in MS patients compared with controls, indicating that these cells may be participating in the pathogenesis of MS.
The vascular endothelium mediates the ability of blood vessels to alter their architecture in response to hemodynamic changes; however, the specific endothelial-derived factors that are responsible for vascular remodeling are poorly understood. Here we show that endothelial-derived nitric oxide (NO) is a major endothelial-derived mediator controlling vascular remodeling. In response to external carotid artery ligation, mice with targeted disruption of the endothelial nitric oxide synthase gene (eNOS) did not remodel their ipsilateral common carotid arteries whereas wild-type mice did. Rather, the eNOS mutant mice displayed a paradoxical increase in wall thickness accompanied by a hyperplastic response of the arterial wall. These findings demonstrate a critical role for endogenous NO as a negative regulator of vascular smooth muscle proliferation in response to a remodeling stimulus. Furthermore, our data suggests that a primary defect in the NOS/NO pathway can promote abnormal remodeling and may facilitate pathological changes in vessel wall morphology associated with complex diseases such as hypertension and atherosclerosis.
Defective trafficking of the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) is the most common cause of cystic fibrosis. In chloride-secreting epithelia, it is well established that CFTR localizes to intracellular organelles and to apical membranes. However, it is controversial whether secretagogues regulate the trafficking of CFTR. To investigate whether acute hormonal stimulation of chloride secretion is coupled to the trafficking of CFTR, we used the intact shark rectal gland, a model tissue in which salt secretion is dynamically regulated and both chloride secretion and cellular CFTR immunofluorescence can be quantified in parallel. In rectal glands perfused under basal conditions without secretagogues, Cl- secretion was 151+/-65 microeq/h/g. Vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP), forskolin, and genistein led to 10-, 6-, and 4-fold increases in Cl- secretion. In basal glands, quantitative confocal microscopy revealed CFTR immunofluorescence extending from the apical membrane deeply into the cell (7.28+/-0.35 micron). During stimulation with secretagogues, apical extension of CFTR immunofluorescence into the cell was reduced significantly to 3.24+/-0.08 micron by VIP, 4.08+/-0.13 by forskolin, and 3.19+/-0.1 by genistein (P < 0.001). Moreover, the peak intensity of CFTR fluorescence shifted towards the apical membrane (peak fluorescence 2.5+/-0.13 micron basal vs. 1.51+/-0.06, 1.77+/-0.1, and 1.38+/-0.05 for VIP, forskolin, and genistein; all P < 0.001). The increase in both Cl- secretion and apical CFTR trafficking reversed to basal values after removal of VIP. These data provide the first quantitative morphological evidence for acute hormonal regulation of CFTR trafficking in an intact epithelial tissue.
T cells infiltrating inflammatory sites are usually of the activated/memory type. The precise mechanism for the positioning of these cells within tissues is unclear. Adhesion molecules certainly play a role; however, the intricate control of cell migration appears to be mediated by numerous chemokines and their receptors. Particularly important chemokines for activated/memory T cells are the CXCR3 ligands IP-10 and Mig and the CCR5 ligands RANTES, macrophage inflammatory protein-1alpha, and macrophage inflammatory protein-1beta. We raised anti-CXCR3 mAbs and were able to detect high levels of CXCR3 expression on activated T cells. Surprisingly, a proportion of circulating blood T cells, B cells, and natural killer cells also expressed CXCR3. CCR5 showed a similar expression pattern as CXCR3, but was expressed on fewer circulating T cells. Blood T cells expressing CXCR3 (and CCR5) were mostly CD45RO+, and generally expressed high levels of beta1 integrins. This phenotype resembled that of T cells infiltrating inflammatory lesions. Immunostaining of T cells in rheumatoid arthritis synovial fluid confirmed that virtually all such T cells expressed CXCR3 and approximately 80% expressed CCR5, representing high enrichment over levels of CXCR3+ and CCR5+ T cells in blood, 35 and 15%, respectively. Analysis by immunohistochemistry of various inflamed tissues gave comparable findings in that virtually all T cells within the lesions expressed CXCR3, particularly in perivascular regions, whereas far fewer T cells within normal lymph nodes expressed CXCR3 or CCR5. These results demonstrate that the chemokine receptor CXCR3 and CCR5 are markers for T cells associated with certain inflammatory reactions, particularly TH-1 type reactions. Moreover, CXCR3 and CCR5 appear to identify subsets of T cells in blood with a predilection for homing to these sites.
Rodents are the unique species carrying duplicated angiotensin (Ang) type 1 (AT1) receptor genes, Agtr1a and Agtr1b. After separately generating Agtr1a and Agtr1b null mutant mice by gene targeting, we produced double mutant mice homozygous for both Agtr1a and Agtr1b null mutation (Agtr1a-/-; Agtr1b-/-) by mating the single gene mutants. Agtr1a-/-, Agtr1b-/- mice are characterized by normal in utero survival but decreased ex utero survival rate. After birth they are characterized by low body weight gain, marked hypotension, and abnormal kidney morphology including delayed maturity in glomerular growth, hypoplastic papilla, and renal arterial hypertrophy. These abnormal phenotypes are quantitatively similar to those found in mutant mice homozygous for the angiotensinogen gene (Agt-/-), indicating that major biological functions of endogenous Ang elucidated by the abnormal phenotypes of Agt-/- are mediated by the AT1 receptors. Infusion of Ang II, AT1 blockers, or an AT2 blocker was without effect on blood pressure in Agtr1a-/-; Agtr1b-/- mice, indicating that AT2 receptor does not exert acute depressor effects in these mice lacking AT1 receptors. Also, unlike Agt-/- mice, some Agtr1a-/-; Agtr1b-/- mice have a large ventricular septum defect, suggesting that another receptor such as AT2 is functionally activated in Agtr1a-/-, Agtr1b-/- mice.
Chronic alcohol abuse increases the incidence and mortality of the acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) in septic patients. To examine a potential mechanism, we hypothesized that ethanol ingestion predisposes to sepsis-mediated acute lung injury by decreasing alveolar type II cell glutathione homeostasis and function. Lungs isolated from rats fed ethanol (20% in water for >/= 3 wk), compared with lungs from control-fed rats, had greater (P < 0. 05) edematous injury (reflected by nonhydrostatic weight gain) after endotoxin (2 mg/kg intraperitoneally) and subsequent perfusion ex vivo with n-formylmethionylleucylphenylalanine (fMLP, 10(-7) M). Ethanol ingestion decreased (P < 0.05) glutathione levels in the plasma, lung tissue, and lung lavage fluid, and increased (P < 0.05) oxidized glutathione levels in the lung lavage fluid. Furthermore, ethanol ingestion decreased type II cell glutathione content by 95% (P < 0.05), decreased (P < 0.05) type II cell surfactant synthesis and secretion, and decreased (P < 0.05) type II cell viability, in vitro. Finally, treatment with the glutathione precursors S-adenosyl-L-methionine and N-acetylcysteine in the final week of ethanol ingestion significantly reduced lung edema during perfusion ex vivo. We conclude that ethanol ingestion in rats alters alveolar type II cell glutathione levels and function, thereby predisposing the lung to acute edematous injury after endotoxemia. We speculate that chronic alcohol abuse in humans predisposes to ARDS through similar mechanisms.
We tested the hypothesis that endogenous angiotensin II participates in the direct and reflex effects of adenosine on the sympathetic nervous system. Nine healthy men were studied after 1 wk of the angiotensin II type I receptor antagonist losartan (100 mg daily) or placebo, according to a double-blind randomized crossover design. Bilateral forearm blood flows, NE appearance rates, and total body NE spillover were determined before and during graded brachial arterial infusion of adenosine (0.5, 1.5, 5, and 15 microg/100 ml forearm tissue) and nitroprusside. Adenosine increased total body NE spillover (P < 0.05) whereas nitroprusside did not. Losartan lowered BP (P < 0.05), had no effect on total body NE spillover at rest, or forearm vasodilation during either infusion, but reduced the systemic noradrenergic response to adenosine from 1.0+/-0.4 nmol/min on the placebo day to 0.2+/-0.3 nmol/min (P < 0.01), and forearm NE appearance rate in response to adenosine was lower in the infused, as compared with the contralateral arm (P = 0.04). The sympatho-excitatory reflex elicited by adenosine is mediated through pathways involving the angiotensin II type I receptor. Interactions between adenosine and angiotensin II may assume importance during ischemia or congestive heart failure and could contribute to the benefit of converting enzyme inhibition in these conditions.
The p21 protein is found in the nucleus of most cells at low levels and is induced to elevated levels after DNA damage, causing cell-cycle arrest. We have reported that p21 mRNA is rapidly induced to high levels in murine kidney after acute renal failure. The function(s) in the kidney of p21 induction in cisplatin-induced acute renal failure was studied with mice that are homozygous for a p21 gene deletion. After drug administration, as compared with their wild-type littermates, p21(-/-) mice display a more rapid onset of the physiologic signs of acute renal failure, develop more severe morphologic damage, and have a higher mortality. Therefore, the induction of p21 after cisplatin administration is a protective event for kidney cells. Using both bromodeoxyuridine incorporation and nuclear proliferating cell nuclear antigen detection, we found that cisplatin administration caused kidney cells to start entering the cell-cycle. However, cell-cycle progression is inhibited in wild-type mice, whereas kidney cells in the p21(-/-) mice progress into S-phase. We propose that p21 protects kidneys damaged by cisplatin by preventing DNA-damaged cells from entering the cell-cycle, which would otherwise result in death from either apoptosis or necrosis.
Overexpression of proinflammatory, type 1 cytokines has been demonstrated in psoriasis and is believed to be of pathophysiological importance. IL-10 is a type 2 cytokine with major impact on immunoregulation, since it inhibits type 1/proinflammatory cytokine formation. Therefore, we investigated its role in psoriasis. We found a relative deficiency in cutaneous IL-10 mRNA expression compared with other inflammatory dermatoses. Interestingly, patients during established antipsoriatic therapy showed higher IL-10 mRNA expression of peripheral blood mononuclear cells than patients before therapy. This suggested that IL-10 may have antipsoriatic capacity. Therefore, we performed a phase 2 pilot trial with subcutaneous IL-10 administration (8 microg/kg/d) over 24 d in three patients. Clinical efficiency measured by objective and subjective parameters was found. Immunosuppressive effects (depressed monocytic HLA-DR expression, TNF-alpha and IL-12 secretion capacity, IL-12 plasma levels, and responsiveness to recall antigens) as well as a shift toward a type 2 cytokine pattern (increasing proportion of IL-4, IL-5, and IL-10 producing T cells, selective increase in IgE serum levels) were observed. Remarkably, IL-10 administration also enhanced the intracutaneous IL-10 mRNA expression. Our investigations demonstrate the major importance of IL-10 in psoriasis and show that IL-10 administration represents a new therapeutic approach. This is the first report on IL-10 therapy for cutaneous disorders.
Mechanisms that regulate endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) expression in normal and hypoxic pulmonary circulation are poorly understood. Lung eNOS expression is increased after chronic hypoxic pulmonary hypertension in rats, but whether this increase is due to altered hemodynamics or to hypoxia is unknown. Therefore, to determine the effect of blood flow changes on eNOS expression in the normal pulmonary circulation, and to determine whether the increase in eNOS expression after chronic hypoxia is caused by hemodynamic changes or low oxygen tension, we compared eNOS expression in the left and right lungs of normoxic and chronically hypoxic rats with surgical stenosis of the left pulmonary artery (LPA). LPA stenosis in normoxic rats reduced blood flow to the left lung from 9.8+/-0.9 to 0.8+/-0.4 ml/100 mg/min (sham surgery controls vs. LPA stenosis, P < 0.05), but there was not a significant increase in right lung blood flow. When compared with the right lung, eNOS protein and mRNA content in the left lung was decreased by 32+/-7 and 54+/-13%, respectively (P < 0.05), and right lung eNOS protein content was unchanged. After 3 wk of hypoxia, LPA stenosis reduced blood flow to the left lung from 5.8+/-0.6 to 1.5+/-0.4 ml/100 mg/min, and increased blood flow to the right lung from 5.8+/-0.5 to 10.0+/-1.4 ml/ 100 mg/min (sham surgery controls vs. LPA stenosis, P < 0.05). Despite reduced flow and pressure to the left lung and increased flow and pressure to the right lung, left and right lung eNOS protein and mRNA contents were not different. There were also no differences in lung eNOS protein levels when compared with chronically hypoxic sham surgery controls (P > 0.05). We conclude that reduction of pulmonary blood flow decreases eNOS mRNA and protein expression in normoxic adult rat lungs, and that hypoxia increases eNOS expression independently of changes in hemodynamics. These findings demonstrate that hemodynamic forces maintain eNOS content in the normoxic pulmonary circulation of the adult rat, and suggest that chronic hypoxia increases eNOS expression independently of changes in hemodynamics.
Although NFkappaB binding activity is induced during liver regeneration after partial hepatectomy, the physiological consequence of this induction is unknown. We have assessed the role of NFkappaB during liver regeneration by delivering to the liver a superrepressor of NFkappaB activity using an adenoviral vector expressing a mutated form of IkappaBalpha. This adenovirus (Ad5IkappaB) was almost exclusively expressed in the liver and inhibited NFkappaB DNA binding activity and transcriptional activity in cultured cells as well as in the liver in vivo. After partial hepatectomy, infection with Ad5IkappaB, but not a control adenovirus (Ad5LacZ), resulted in the induction of massive apoptosis and hepatocytes as demonstrated by histological staining and TUNEL analysis. In addition, infection with Ad5IkappaB but not Ad5LacZ decreased the mitotic index after partial hepatectomy. These two phenomena, increased apoptosis and failure to progress through the cell cycle, were associated with liver dysfunction in animals infected with the Ad5IkappaB but not Ad5LacZ, as demonstrated by elevated serum bilirubin and ammonia levels. Thus, the induction of NFkappaB during liver regeneration after partial hepatectomy appears to be a required event to prevent apoptosis and to allow for normal cell cycle progression.
This study tested the hypothesis that nitric oxide (NO) and atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) can attenuate the effects of adrenergic agonists on the growth of cardiac myocytes and fibroblasts. In ventricular cells cultured from neonatal rat heart, ANP and the NO donor S-nitroso-N-acetyl-D,L-penicillamine (SNAP) caused concentration-dependent decreases in the norepinephrine (NE)-stimulated incorporation of [3H]leucine in myocytes and [3H]thymidine in fibroblasts. In myocytes, the NO synthase inhibitor NG-monomethyl-L-arginine potentiated NE-stimulated [3H]leucine incorporation. In both cell types, ANP and SNAP increased intracellular cGMP levels, and their growth-suppressing effects were mimicked by the cGMP analogue 8-bromo-cGMP. Furthermore, in myocytes, 8-bromo-cGMP attenuated the alpha1-adrenergic receptor-stimulated increases in c-fos. Likewise, ANP and 8-bromo-cGMP attenuated the alpha1-adrenergic receptor- stimulated increase in prepro-ANP mRNA and the alpha1-adrenergic receptor-stimulated decrease in sarcoplasmic reticulum calcium ATPase mRNA. The L-type Ca2+ channel blockers verapamil and nifedipine inhibited NE-stimulated incorporation of [3H]leucine in myocytes and [3H]thymidine in fibroblasts, and these effects were not additive with those of ANP, SNAP, or 8-bromo-cGMP. In myocytes, the Ca2+ channel agonist BAY K8644 caused an increase in [3H]leucine incorporation which was inhibited by ANP. These findings indicate that NO and ANP can attenuate the effects of NE on the growth of cardiac myocytes and fibroblasts, most likely by a cGMP-mediated inhibition of NE-stimulated Ca2+ influx.
Neutrophil (PMN) activation is critical in inflammation and reperfusion injury, suggesting that PMN-directed therapies may be of clinical use. Here, leukotriene B4 (LTB4)-induced PMN influx in ear skin was equivalent between 5-lipoxygenase knockout and wild-type mice. To explore actions of lipoxin (LX) in PMN-mediated tissue injury, we prepared several novel LX stable analogues, including analogues of LXA4 and aspirin-triggered 15-epi-LXA4 as well as LXB4, and examined their impact in PMN infiltration and vascular permeability. Each applied topically to mouse ears inhibited dramatically PMN-mediated increases in vascular permeability (IC50 range of 13-26 nmol) with a rank order of 15(R/S)-methyl-LXA4 > 16-para-fluoro-phenoxy-LXA4 approximately 5(S)-methyl-LXB4 >/= 16-phenoxy-LXA4 > 5(R)-methyl-LXB4. These LX mimetics were as potent as an LTB4 receptor antagonist, yet results from microphysiometry with mouse leukocytes indicated that they do not act as LTB4 receptor level antagonists. In addition, within 24 h of delivery, > 90% were cleared from ear biopsies. Neither IL-8, FMLP, C5a, LTD4, nor platelet-activating factor act topically to promote PMN influx. When applied with LTB4, PGE2 enhanced sharply both infiltration and vascular permeability, which were inhibited by a fluorinated stable analogue of aspirin-triggered LX. These results indicate that mimetics of LXs and aspirin-triggered 15-epi-LXA4 are topically active in this model and are potent inhibitors of both PMN infiltration and PMN-mediated vascular injury.
Pompe disease is a fatal genetic muscle disorder caused by a deficiency of acid alpha-glucosidase (GAA), a glycogen degrading lysosomal enzyme. GAA-deficient (AMD) Japanese quails exhibit progressive myopathy and cannot lift their wings, fly, or right themselves from the supine position (flip test). Six 4-wk-old acid maltase-deficient quails, with the clinical symptoms listed, were intravenously injected with 14 or 4.2 mg/kg of precursor form of recombinant human GAA or buffer alone every 2-3 d for 18 d (seven injections). On day 18, both high dose-treated birds (14 mg/kg) scored positive flip tests and flapped their wings, and one bird flew up more than 100 cm. GAA activity increased in most of the tissues examined. In heart and liver, glycogen levels dropped to normal and histopathology was normal. In pectoralis muscle, morphology was essentially normal, except for increased glycogen granules. In sharp contrast, sham-treated quail muscle had markedly increased glycogen granules, multi-vesicular autophagosomes, and inter- and intrafascicular fatty infiltrations. Low dose-treated birds (4.2 mg/kg) improved less biochemically and histopathologically than high dose birds, indicating a dose-dependent response. Additional experiment with intermediate doses and extended treatment (four birds, 5.7-9 mg/kg for 45 d) halted the progression of the disease. Our data is the first to show that an exogenous protein can target to muscle and produce muscle improvement. These data also suggest enzyme replacement with recombinant human GAA is a promising therapy for human Pompe disease.
Aspirin causes bronchoconstriction in aspirin-intolerant asthma (AIA) patients by triggering cysteinyl-leukotriene (cys-LT) production, probably by removing PGE2-dependent inhibition. To investigate why aspirin does not cause bronchoconstriction in all individuals, we immunostained enzymes of the leukotriene and prostanoid pathways in bronchial biopsies from AIA patients, aspirin-tolerant asthma (ATA) patients, and normal (N) subjects. Counts of cells expressing the terminal enzyme for cys-LT synthesis, LTC4 synthase, were fivefold higher in AIA biopsies (11.5+/-2.2 cells/mm2, n = 10) than in ATA biopsies (2.2+/-0.7, n = 10; P = 0. 0006) and 18-fold higher than in N biopsies (0.6+/-0.4, n = 9; P = 0. 0002). Immunostaining for 5-lipoxygenase, its activating protein (FLAP), LTA4 hydrolase, cyclooxygenase (COX)-1, and COX-2 did not differ. Enhanced baseline cys-LT levels in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid of AIA patients correlated uniquely with bronchial counts of LTC4 synthase+ cells (rho = 0.83, P = 0.01). Lysine-aspirin challenge released additional cys-LTs into BAL fluid in AIA patients (200+/-120 pg/ml, n = 8) but not in ATA patients (0. 7+/-5.1, n = 5; P = 0.007). Bronchial responsiveness to lysine-aspirin correlated exclusively with LTC4 synthase+ cell counts (rho = -0.63, P = 0.049, n = 10). Aspirin may remove PGE2-dependent suppression in all subjects, but only in AIA patients does increased bronchial expression of LTC4 synthase allow marked overproduction of cys-LTs leading to bronchoconstriction.
Irinotecan (CPT-11) is a promising antitumor agent, recently approved for use in patients with metastatic colorectal cancer. Its active metabolite, SN-38, is glucuronidated by hepatic uridine diphosphate glucuronosyltransferases (UGTs). The major dose-limiting toxicity of irinotecan therapy is diarrhea, which is believed to be secondary to the biliary excretion of SN-38, the extent of which is determined by SN-38 glucuronidation. The purpose of this study was to identify the specific isoform of UGT involved in SN-38 glucuronidation. In vitro glucuronidation of SN-38 was screened in hepatic microsomes from normal rats (n = 4), normal humans (n = 25), Gunn rats (n = 3), and patients (n = 4) with Crigler-Najjar type I (CN-I) syndrome. A wide intersubject variability in in vitro SN-38 glucuronide formation rates was found in humans. Gunn rats and CN-I patients lacked SN-38 glucuronidating activity, indicating the role of UGT1 isoform in SN-38 glucuronidation. A significant correlation was observed between SN-38 and bilirubin glucuronidation (r = 0.89; P = 0.001), whereas there was a poor relationship between para-nitrophenol and SN-38 glucuronidation (r = 0.08; P = 0.703). Intact SN-38 glucuronidation was observed only in HK293 cells transfected with the UGT1A1 isozyme. These results demonstrate that UGT1A1 is the isoform responsible for SN-38 glucuronidation. These findings indicate a genetic predisposition to the metabolism of irinotecan, suggesting that patients with low UGT1A1 activity, such as those with Gilbert's syndrome, may be at an increased risk for irinotecan toxicity.
Brief ischemic periods lead to myocardial dysfunction without myocardial infarction. It has been shown that expression of inducible HSP70 in hearts of transgenic mice leads to decreased infarct size, but it remains unclear if HSP70 can also protect against myocardial dysfunction after brief ischemia. To investigate this question, we developed a mouse model in which regional myocardial function can be measured before and after a temporary ischemic event in vivo. In addition, myocardial function was determined after brief episodes of global ischemia in an isolated Langendorff heart. HSP70-positive mice and transgene negative littermates underwent 8 min of regional myocardial ischemia created by occlusion of the left descending coronary artery, followed by 60 min of reperfusion. This procedure did not result in a myocardial infarction. Regional epicardial strain was used as a sensitive indicator for changes in myocardial function after cardiac ischemia. Maximum principal strain was significantly greater in HSP70-positive mice with 88+/-6% of preischemic values vs. 58+/-6% in transgene-negative mice (P < 0.05). Similarly, in isolated Langendorff perfused hearts of HSP70-positive and transgene-negative littermates exposed to 10 min of global ischemia and 90 min of reperfusion, HSP70 transgenic hearts showed a better-preserved ventricular peak systolic pressure. Thus, we conclude that expression of HSP70 protects against postischemic myocardial dysfunction as shown by better preserved myocardial function.
Pituitary adenylyl cyclase-activating polypeptide (PACAP) is a potent endogenous secretagogue for chromaffin cells. Chromogranin A is the major soluble core component in secretory vesicles. Since chromogranin A is secreted along with catecholamines, we asked whether PACAP regulates expression of the chromogranin A gene in PC12 rat chromaffin cells, so as to resynthesize the just-secreted protein, and whether such biosynthetic regulation is coupled mechanistically to catecholamine secretion. PACAP activated the endogenous chromogranin A gene by four- to fivefold. Proportional results (seven- to eightfold activation) were obtained with a transfected 1,200-bp mouse chromogranin A promoter/luciferase reporter construct. A series of chromogranin A promoter 5' deletion mutant/luciferase reporter constructs narrowed down the PACAP response element to a proximal region containing the cAMP response element (CRE box), at (-71 bp)5'-TGACGTAA-3'(-64 bp). Site-directed point mutations of the CRE site suppressed PACAP-induced trans-activation of the promoter. Thus, the proximal CRE box is entirely necessary for the chromogranin A promoter response to PACAP. Transfer of the CRE box to a neutral, heterologous promoter also conferred activation by PACAP, suggesting that the CRE domain is also sufficient to mediate the transcriptional response to PACAP. Expression of a dominant-negative mutant (KCREB) of the CRE-binding factor CREB markedly diminished trans-activation of the chromogranin A promoter by PACAP. Cotransfection of expression plasmids encoding the protein kinase A inhibitor, or an inactive protein kinase A (PKA) catalytic beta subunit, inhibited both forskolin and PACAP activation of chromogranin A transcription, revealing that PACAP-induced trans-activation is highly dependent on PKA. By contrast, inhibition of protein kinase C (by chronic exposure to phorbol ester) had no effect on transcriptional activation by PACAP. The potent PACAP/vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) type I receptor antagonist PACAP6-38 impaired both chromogranin A transcription or catecholamine secretion triggered by PACAP38, while the PACAP/VIP type II receptor antagonist (p-Chloro-D-Phe6, Leu17)-VIP had little or no ability to antagonize the PACAP38 effect. The agonist VIP was approximately 100- to 1,000-fold less potent than PACAP in stimulating either secretion or transcription. Thus, PACAP-evoked chromogranin A transcription and catecholamine secretion are likely mediated by the PACAP/VIP type I receptor isoform. Although the calcium channel antagonists Zn2+ (100 microM), nifedipine (10 microM), or ruthenium red (10 microM), or the cytosolic calcium chelator BAPTA-AM (50 microM) each strongly impaired PACAP-induced secretion, transcriptional activation of chromogranin A remained unaltered. Therefore, we propose that PACAP signals to chromogranin A transcription through the CRE in cis, and through PKA and CREB in trans. By contrast, a pathway involving cytosolic calcium entry through L-type voltage-dependent channels is required for PACAP to evoke catecholamine secretion.
The selectins are calcium-dependent C-type lectins that bind certain sialylated, fucosylated, sulfated glycoprotein ligands. L-selectin also recognizes endothelial proteoglycans in a calcium-dependent manner, via heparan sulfate (HS) glycosaminoglycan chains enriched in unsubstituted glucosamine units. We now show that these HS chains can also bind P-selectin, but not E-selectin. However, while L-selectin binding requires micromolar levels of free calcium, P-selectin recognition is largely divalent cation-independent. Despite this, HS chains bound to P-selectin are eluted by ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid (EDTA), but only at high concentrations. Porcine intestinal mucosal (mast cell-derived) heparin (PIM-heparin) shows similar properties, with no binding to E-selectin, calcium-dependent binding of a subfraction to L-selectin and to P-selectin, and calcium-independent binding of a larger fraction to P-selectin, the latter being disrupted by high EDTA concentrations. Analysis of defined heparin fragment pools shows a size dependence for interaction, with tetradecasaccharides showing easily detectable binding to L- and P-selectin affinity columns. L-selectin binding fragments include more heavily sulfated and epimerized regions and, as with the endothelial HS chains, they are enriched in free amino groups. The P-selectin binding component includes this fraction as well as some less highly modified regions. Thus, endothelium-derived HS chains and mast cell-derived heparins could play a role in modulating the biology of selectins in vivo. Notably, P- and L-selectin binding to sialyl-Lewisx and to HL-60 cells (which are known to carry the native ligand PSGL-1) is inhibited by unfractionated pharmaceutical heparin preparations at concentrations 12-50-fold lower than those recommended for effective anticoagulation in vivo. In contrast, two low molecular weight heparins currently considered as clinical replacements for unfractionated heparin are much poorer inhibitors. Thus, patients undergoing heparin therapy for other reasons may be experiencing clinically significant inhibition of L- and P-selectin function, and the current switchover to low-molecular weight heparins may come at some loss of this effect. Low-dose unfractionated heparin should be investigated as a treatment option for acute and chronic diseases in which P- and L-selectin play pathological roles.
Apoptosis in vivo is followed almost inevitably by rapid uptake into adjacent phagocytic cells, a critical process in tissue remodeling, regulation of the immune response, or resolution of inflammation. Phagocytosis of apoptotic cells by macrophages has been suggested to be a quiet process that does not lead to production of inflammatory mediators. Here we show that phagocytosis of apoptotic neutrophils (in contrast to immunoglobulin G-opsonized apoptotic cells) actively inhibited the production of interleukin (IL)-1beta, IL-8, IL-10, granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor, and tumor necrosis factor-alpha, as well as leukotriene C4 and thromboxane B2, by human monocyte-derived macrophages. In contrast, production of transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta1, prostaglandin E2, and platelet-activating factor (PAF) was increased. The latter appeared to be involved in the inhibition of proinflammatory cytokine production because addition of exogenous TGF-beta1, prostaglandin E2, or PAF resulted in inhibition of lipopolysaccharide-stimulated cytokine production. Furthermore, anti-TGF-beta antibody, indomethacin, or PAF receptor antagonists restored cytokine production in lipopolysaccharide-stimulated macrophages that had phagocytosed apoptotic cells. These results suggest that binding and/or phagocytosis of apoptotic cells induces active antiinflammatory or suppressive properties in human macrophages. Therefore, it is likely that resolution of inflammation depends not only on the removal of apoptotic cells but on active suppression of inflammatory mediator production. Disorders in either could result in chronic inflammatory diseases.
The Goto-Kakisaki (GK) rat is a genetic model of non-insulin-dependent diabetes. At 21.5 d of age we found that GK fetuses had an increased plasma glucose concentration, a decreased plasma insulin level, and a reduced pancreatic beta cell mass. To investigate the beta cell function during fetal life we used a hyperglycemic clamp protocol applied to the mothers, which allowed us to obtain a steady-state hyperglycemia in the corresponding fetuses. At variance, with Wistar (W) fetuses, plasma insulin concentration in GK fetuses did not rise in response to hyperglycemia. In contrast, GK fetal pancreas released insulin in response to glucose in vitro to the same extent as W fetal pancreas. Such a discrepancy between the in vivo and in vitro results suggests that the lack of pancreatic reactivity to glucose as seen in vivo is extrinsic to the fetal GK beta cell. Finally, the importance of gestational hyperglycemia was investigated by performing crosses between GK and W rats. Fetuses issued from crosses between W mother and GK father or GK mother and W father had a beta cell mass close to normal values and were still able to increase their plasma insulin levels in response to hyperglycemia in vivo. Our data suggest that hyperglycemia in utero does not influence the severity of the decrease of the beta cell mass or the lack of the insulin secretory response to glucose in the fetal GK rat. Moreover they indicate that conjunction of GK genes originating from both parents is necessary in order for these defects to be fully expressed.
Apolipoprotein E knockout (apoE0) mice accumulate atherogenic remnant lipoproteins in plasma. We now provide evidence that these particles are enriched in sphingomyelin (SM), and explore the mechanisms and possible pathophysiological consequences of this finding. The phosphatidylcholine/sphingomyelin (PC/SM) ratio was reduced in all lipoproteins in apoE0 mice compared with wild-type (Wt) mice (2.0+/-0.2 vs. 4.7+/-0.5; 2.8+/-0.5 vs. 5.5+/-0.9; 1.9+/-0. 5 vs. 4.6+/-0.5 for VLDL, LDL, and HDL), reflecting 400 and 179% increases in plasma pools of SM and PC, respectively. Turnover studies using [14C]PC/[3H]SM VLDL or HDL showed that the fractional catabolic rate (FCR) of VLDL-SM and HDL-SM were markedly reduced in the apoE0 mice compared with Wt mice, while the FCRs of VLDL-PC and HDL-PC were similar. By contrast, the FCRs of [3H]PC ether and [14C]SM were identical in apoE0 and Wt mice. The production rates of VLDL-SM and HDL-SM in apoE0 mice were much higher than in Wt mice, while the production rates of lipoprotein PC were similar. To assess the underlying mechanisms, we also measured the PC/SM ratio in VLDL and LDL of LDL receptor knockout (LDLr0) and hepatic LDL receptor-related protein knockout/LDLr0 mice, but found no difference with Wt mice. Using S-sphingomyelinase, an enzyme secreted by macrophages and endothelial cells, we found that VLDL and LDL from apoE0, but not from Wt or LDLr0 mice, were significantly aggregated, and that aggregation was not prevented by adding back apoE. We then enriched the apoE0-VLDL and Wt-VLDL with different amounts of SM, and found that VLDL aggregation was enhanced. Thus, the increased SM content of lipoproteins in apoE0 mice is due to combined synthesis and clearance defects. Impaired SM clearance reflects resistance to intravascular enzymes and delayed removal by a non-LDLr, non-LDLr related protein pathway. The increased SM content in slowly cleared remnant lipoproteins may enhance their susceptibility to arterial wall SMase and increase their atherogenic potential.
Copyright © 2014 American Society for Clinical Investigation