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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 7 (1998), Issue 6, Pages 391-396

Effects of granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor and cyclic AMP interaction on human neutrophil apoptosis

Department of Internal Medicine, Immunology and Infectious Diseases, University of Bari Medical School, Bari 70124, Italy

Copyright © 1998 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The current study was undertaken to evaluate the effects of granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) and cyclic AMP (cAMP) signaling interaction on human neutrophil apoptosis, either occurring spontaneously or induced by Fas antigen activation. Results show that GM-CSF, dibutyryl cAMP (a cAMP analog) and forskolin (an adenylate cyclase activator) are all able to suppress spontaneous neutrophil cell death. Of note however, when GM-CSF is used in combination with cAMP-elevating agents, an additive effect on neutrophil survival is observed with dibutyryl cAMP only, whereas supplementation of cell cultures with GM-CSF and forskolin results in a progressive reduction of antiapoptotic effects exerted by the single compounds. Moreover, although dibutyryl cAMP and forskolin do not affect Fas-triggered apoptotic events, they are still able to modulate the GM-CSF capacity to prolong neutrophil survival following anti-Fas IgM cell challenge, with effects similar to those respectively exerted on spontaneous neutrophil apoptosis. The data indicate that GM-CSF m ay negatively modulate the cAMP-mediated antiapoptotic pathway in human neutrophils, likely via the inhibition of adenylate cyclase activity. This would prevent an abnormal neutrophil survival as a result of cAMP signaling stimulation, which provides a novel insight into the role of GM-CSF as a physiological regulator of myeloid cell turnover.