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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 504952, 8 pages
Research Article

NFκB and AP-1 Drive Human Myometrial IL8 Expression

1Parturition Research Group, Institute of Reproductive and Developmental Biology, Imperial College London, London W12 0NN, UK
2Academic Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, Imperial College London, 369 Fulham Road, London SW10 9NH, UK

Received 8 January 2012; Accepted 8 March 2012

Academic Editor: Morgan R. Peltier

Copyright © 2012 Shirin Khanjani et al. 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 uterine expression of the chemokine IL8 increases dramatically with the onset of labour both at term and preterm. The IL8 promoter contains binding sites for the transcription factors nuclear factor-kappa B (NFκB), activator protein-1 (AP-1), and CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein (CEBP). In this study we investigated the roles of these transcription factors in IL1B regulation of the IL8 gene in human myometrium. Using chromatin immune precipitation (ChIP) assay, we showed that each of NFκB, CEBP, and AP-1 binds to the IL8 promoter upon IL1B stimulation. To examine the relative importance of each site in IL8 gene expression, site-directed mutagenesis of each of these sites was performed. We found that the NFκB site was essential for basal and IL1B-stimulated gene expression. Mutation of the AP-1 site reduced both basal and IL1B-stimulated expression but to a lesser extent. Mutation of the CEBP site had no effect upon basal expression but eliminated the IL1B response. Small interfering RNA (siRNA) silencing of NFκB abolished the IL8 response to IL1B significantly; siRNA against AP-1 reduced it to a lesser extent whilst knockdown of CEBP enhanced the response. Our data confirms a central and essential role for NFκB in regulation of IL8 in human myometrium.