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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2016, Article ID 6152713, 15 pages
Research Article

Inhibition of Extracellular Calcium Influx Results in Enhanced IL-12 Production in LPS-Treated Murine Macrophages by Downregulation of the CaMKK-AMPK-SIRT1 Signaling Pathway

1Medical Research Center, Southwest Hospital, The Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400038, China
2Department of Pharmacology, College of Pharmacy, The Third Military Medical University, Chongqing 400038, China

Received 19 January 2016; Revised 19 April 2016; Accepted 27 April 2016

Academic Editor: Soh Yamazaki

Copyright © 2016 Xin Liu 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.


Activated macrophages are the primary sources of IL-12, a key cytokine bridging innate and adaptive immunity. However, macrophages produce low amounts of IL-12 upon stimulation and the underlying regulatory mechanism remains unclear. In this study, we found a new calcium-dependent mechanism that controlled IL-12 production in LPS-treated murine macrophages. First, LPS was demonstrated to induce extracellular calcium entry in murine peritoneal macrophages and inhibition of calcium influx resulted in marked enhancement in IL-12 production. Then, withdrawal of extracellular calcium was found to suppress CaMKK and AMPK activation triggered by LPS while chemical inhibition or genetic knockdown of these two kinases augmented LPS induced IL-12 production. AMPK activation increased the NAD+/NADH ratio and activated Sirtuin 1 (SIRT1), a NAD+-dependent deacetylating enzyme and negative regulator of inflammation. Chemical inhibitor or siRNA of SIRT1 enhanced IL-12 release while its agonist suppressed IL-12 production. Finally, it was found that SIRT1 selectively affected the transcriptional activity of NF-κB which thereby inhibited IL-12 production. Overall, our study demonstrates a new role of transmembrane calcium mobilization in immunity modulation such that inhibition of calcium influx leads to impaired activation of CaMKKβ-AMPK-SIRT1 signaling pathway which lifts restriction on NF-κB activation and results in enhanced IL-12 production.