Mediators of Inflammation The latest articles from Hindawi © 2017 , Hindawi Limited . All rights reserved. Increased Transendothelial Transport of CCL3 Is Insufficient to Drive Immune Cell Transmigration through the Blood–Brain Barrier under Inflammatory Conditions In Vitro Thu, 25 May 2017 08:18:35 +0000 Many neuroinflammatory diseases are characterized by massive immune cell infiltration into the central nervous system. Identifying the underlying mechanisms could aid in the development of therapeutic strategies specifically interfering with inflammatory cell trafficking. To achieve this, we implemented and validated a blood–brain barrier (BBB) model to study chemokine secretion, chemokine transport, and leukocyte trafficking in vitro. In a coculture model consisting of a human cerebral microvascular endothelial cell line and human astrocytes, proinflammatory stimulation downregulated the expression of tight junction proteins, while the expression of adhesion molecules and chemokines was upregulated. Moreover, chemokine transport across BBB cocultures was upregulated, as evidenced by a significantly increased concentration of the inflammatory chemokine CCL3 at the luminal side following proinflammatory stimulation. CCL3 transport occurred independently of the chemokine receptors CCR1 and CCR5, albeit that migrated cells displayed increased expression of CCR1 and CCR5. However, overall leukocyte transmigration was reduced in inflammatory conditions, although higher numbers of leukocytes adhered to activated endothelial cells. Altogether, our findings demonstrate that prominent barrier activation following proinflammatory stimulation is insufficient to drive immune cell recruitment, suggesting that additional traffic cues are crucial to mediate the increased immune cell infiltration seen in vivo during neuroinflammation. Maxime De Laere, Carmelita Sousa, Megha Meena, Roeland Buckinx, Jean-Pierre Timmermans, Zwi Berneman, and Nathalie Cools Copyright © 2017 Maxime De Laere et al. All rights reserved. Anti-OSM Antibody Inhibits Tubulointerstitial Lesion in a Murine Model of Lupus Nephritis Wed, 24 May 2017 08:17:51 +0000 The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of oncostatin M (OSM) in tubulointerstitial lesion (TIL) in lupus nephritis (LN). We found that OSM was highly expressed in the renal tissue of LN mice. OSM is one of the interleukin-6 cytokine family members. In order to clarify the role and mechanism of OSM in LN, mice with LN were treated with anti-OSM antibody or isotype antibody. We evaluated the tubular epithelial-mesenchymal transdifferentiation (EMT) by detecting the E-cadherin, α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA), and fibronectin (FN) expression. We analyzed the inflammation by observing the monocyte chemotactic factor-1 (MCP-1) and intercellular adhesion molecule (ICAM-1) expression and calculated the tubulointerstitial fibrosis area by Masson staining. The results showed that anti-OSM antibody, rather than isotype antibody, improved EMT, inflammation, and tubulointerstitial fibrosis. In addition, the signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) 1 and STAT3 signaling was activated by tyrosine phosphorylation in LN mouse renal tissue, indicating that the phosphorylated STAT1 (p-STAT1) and p-STAT3 were involved in kidney injury. Moreover, decreased p-STAT3 instead of p-STAT1 has been observed after anti-OSM antibody injection. Thus, we concluded that OSM is associated with TIL in lupus nephritis, which may be connected with the activation of STAT3 rather than that of STAT1. Qingjuan Liu, Yunxia Du, Kejun Li, Wei Zhang, Xiaojuan Feng, Jun Hao, Hongbo Li, and Shuxia Liu Copyright © 2017 Qingjuan Liu et al. All rights reserved. Neutrophils in Tuberculosis: Heterogeneity Shapes the Way? Wed, 24 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Infection with M. tuberculosis remains one of the most common infections in the world. The outcome of the infection depends on host ability to mount effective protection and balance inflammatory responses. Neutrophils are innate immune cells implicated in both processes. Accordingly, during M. tuberculosis infection, they play a dual role. Particularly, they contribute to the generation of effector T cells, participate in the formation of granuloma, and are directly involved in tissue necrosis, destruction, and infection dissemination. Neutrophils have a high bactericidal potential. However, data on their ability to eliminate M. tuberculosis are controversial, and the results of neutrophil depletion experiments are not uniform. Thus, the overall roles of neutrophils during M. tuberculosis infection and factors that determine these roles are not fully understood. This review analyzes data on neutrophil defensive and pathological functions during tuberculosis and considers hypotheses explaining the dualism of neutrophils during M. tuberculosis infection and tuberculosis disease. Irina V. Lyadova Copyright © 2017 Irina V. Lyadova. All rights reserved. Fungal Dimorphism and Virulence: Molecular Mechanisms for Temperature Adaptation, Immune Evasion, and In Vivo Survival Tue, 23 May 2017 06:38:26 +0000 The thermally dimorphic fungi are a unique group of fungi within the Ascomycota phylum that respond to shifts in temperature by converting between hyphae (22–25°C) and yeast (37°C). This morphologic switch, known as the phase transition, defines the biology and lifestyle of these fungi. The conversion to yeast within healthy and immunocompromised mammalian hosts is essential for virulence. In the yeast phase, the thermally dimorphic fungi upregulate genes involved with subverting host immune defenses. This review highlights the molecular mechanisms governing the phase transition and recent advances in how the phase transition promotes infection. Gregory M. Gauthier Copyright © 2017 Gregory M. Gauthier. All rights reserved. Effects of Src Kinase Inhibition on Expression of Protein Tyrosine Phosphatase 1B after Brain Hypoxia in a Piglet Animal Model Tue, 23 May 2017 05:38:44 +0000 Background. Protein tyrosine phosphatases (PTPs) in conjunction with protein tyrosine kinases (PTKs) regulate cellular processes by posttranslational modifications of signal transduction proteins. PTP nonreceptor type 1B (PTP-1B) is an enzyme of the PTP family. We have previously shown that hypoxia induces an increase in activation of a class of nonreceptor PTK, the Src kinases. In the present study, we investigated the changes that occur in the expression of PTP-1B in the cytosolic component of the brain of newborn piglets acutely after hypoxia as well as long term for up to 2 weeks. Methods. Newborn piglets were divided into groups: normoxia, hypoxia, hypoxia followed by 1 day and 15 days in FiO2 0.21, and hypoxia pretreated with Src kinase inhibitor PP2, prior to hypoxia followed by 1 day and 15 days. Hypoxia was achieved by providing 7% FiO2 for 1 hour and PTP-1B expression was measured via immunoblotting. Results. PTP-1B increased posthypoxia by about 30% and persisted for 2 weeks while Src kinase inhibition attenuated the expected PTP-1B-increased expression. Conclusions. Our study suggests that Src kinase mediates a hypoxia-induced increased PTP-1B expression. Dimitrios Angelis and Maria Delivoria-Papadopoulos Copyright © 2017 Dimitrios Angelis and Maria Delivoria-Papadopoulos All rights reserved. A Proinflammatory Effect of the β-Glucan from Pleurotus cornucopiae Mushroom on Macrophage Action Mon, 22 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 PCPS from P. citrinopileatus mushroom extract is a β-1,6-glucan possessing a proinflammatory effect on innate immune cells. The PCPS stimulated THP-1 macrophages to secrete significant levels of TNF. Moreover, the mRNA expressions of TNF and IL-1β were significantly enhanced by PCPS treatment. However, the PCPS did not induce to express both IL-12 and IL-10 mRNA in the macrophages. Next, the P. cornucopiae extract (containing mainly PCPS) treatment against mice showed significant increases in TNF and IL-1β mRNA expressions in the peritoneal macrophages of them. In this study, the expression levels of IFNγ mRNA in the spleen were almost the same between the extract- (PCPS-) treated group and control group. However, the expression of IL-4 mRNA showed a lower level in the extract-treated group than that in the control. Our results suggested that the PCPS could induce proinflammatory action in the immune response. In addition, the proinflammatory effect of the PCPS on THP-1 was enhanced by 5′-GMP-Na, while it was reduced by vitamin D2. These two compounds are majorly contained in the P. citrinopileatus mushroom. Therefore, these results suggested that the P. citrinopileatus mushroom might contain other immune regulative compounds, such as vitamin D2, as well as PCPS. Ken-ichiro Minato, Akihiro Ohara, and Masashi Mizuno Copyright © 2017 Ken-ichiro Minato et al. All rights reserved. Correlation between IL-36α and IL-17 and Activity of the Disease in Selected Autoimmune Blistering Diseases Mon, 22 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Dermatitis herpetiformis (DH), bullous pemphigoid (BP), and pemphigus vulgaris (PV) are autoimmune bullous skin conditions with eosinophilic and neutrophilic infiltrations. While cytokines are crucial for the affinity and activation of different leukocyte cells in the inflammation and blister formation, there are no studies concerning a role of IL-36. The goal of the study was to analyze whether interleukin 36 is involved in pathogenesis of DH, BP, and PV. And the second aim of the study was the estimation of correlation between IL-36 and IL-17 and titers of specific antibodies in these diseases. Expression of IL-36 and IL-17 was detected in serum in all DH, BP, and PV samples. Serum levels of IL-36 and IL-17α were statistically higher in DH, BP, and PV groups as compared to the control group. IL-36α levels were statistically higher in DH patients, as compared to patients with PV and BP. Our results showed that IL-36 may be helpful in the diagnostic and monitoring of the activity of the disease. IL-36 may play a relevant role of enrolling eosinophils and neutrophils in DH, BP, and PV and finally provoke tissue injury. Agnieszka Żebrowska, Anna Woźniacka, Katarzyna Juczyńska, Kamila Ociepa, Elżbieta Waszczykowska, Izabela Szymczak, and Rafał Pawliczak Copyright © 2017 Agnieszka Żebrowska et al. All rights reserved. The Many Roles of Galectin-3, a Multifaceted Molecule, in Innate Immune Responses against Pathogens Sun, 21 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Galectins are a group of evolutionarily conserved proteins with the ability to bind β-galactosides through characteristic carbohydrate-recognition domains (CRD). Galectin-3 is structurally unique among all galectins as it contains a C-terminal CRD linked to an N-terminal protein-binding domain, being the only chimeric galectin. Galectin-3 participates in many functions, both intra- and extracellularly. Among them, a prominent role for Galectin-3 in inflammation has been recognized. Galectin-3 has also been shown to directly bind to pathogens and to have various effects on the functions of the cells of the innate immune system. Thanks to these two properties, Galectin-3 participates in several ways in the innate immune response against invading pathogens. Galectin-3 has been proposed to function not only as a pattern-recognition receptor (PRR) but also as a danger-associated molecular pattern (DAMP). In this review, we analyze the various roles that have been assigned to Galectin-3, both as a PRR and as a DAMP, in the context of immune responses against pathogenic microorganisms. Laura Díaz-Alvarez and Enrique Ortega Copyright © 2017 Laura Díaz-Alvarez and Enrique Ortega. All rights reserved. Gender Disparity in the Relationship between Prevalence of Thyroid Nodules and Metabolic Syndrome Components: The SHDC-CDPC Community-Based Study Sun, 21 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 The study is aimed to investigate the pathogenesis underlying the increased prevalence of thyroid nodule (TN) in different levels of metabolic syndrome (MetS) components and analyze the relationships between TN and MetS components. A total of 6,798 subjects, including 2201 patients with TN, were enrolled in this study. Anthropometric, biochemical, thyroid ultrasonographic, and other metabolic parameters were all measured. There was obviously sexual difference in the prevalence of TN (males 26.0%, females 38.5%, resp.). The prevalence of TN in hyperuricemia (45.7% versus 37.4%, P = 0.001), NAFLD (41.2% versus 36.4%, P < 0.05), and MetS (41.4% versus 35.4%, P < 0.001) groups was significantly increased only in females. Insulin resistance [OR = 1.31 (1.15, 1.49)], MetS [OR = 1.18 (1.03, 1.35)], and diabetes [OR = 1.25 (1.06, 1.48)] were all independent risk factors for TN in total subjects, whereas, after stratified analysis of gender, MetS [OR = 1.29, (1.09, 1.53)] and diabetes [OR = 1.47, (1.17, 1.84)] are still strongly and independently associated with the higher risks of TN in female subjects, but not in males. Our results suggest that the components of MetS might associate with the higher risks of TN in women than in men, but further cohort study of this gender disparity in the association between TN and MetS is required. Xiaoying Ding, Ying Xu, Yufan Wang, Xiaohua Li, Chunhua Lu, Jing Su, Yuting Chen, Yuhang Ma, Yanhua Yin, Yong Wu, Yaqiong Jin, Lihua Yu, Junyi Jiang, Naisi Zhao, Qingwu Yan, Andrew S. Greenberg, Haiyan Sun, Mingyu Gu, Li Zhao, Yunhong Huang, Yijie Wu, Chunxian Qian, and Yongde Peng Copyright © 2017 Xiaoying Ding et al. All rights reserved. Altered Cytokine Expression and Barrier Properties after In Vitro Infection of Porcine Epithelial Cells with Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli and Probiotic Enterococcus faecium Sun, 21 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 The aim of the present study was to elucidate the effects of the probiotic feed additive Enterococcus faecium NCIMB 10415 (E. faecium) on porcine jejunal epithelial cells (IPEC-J2) during an in vitro challenge with enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC). Cells were incubated with E. faecium, ETEC, or both, and the effects on barrier function and structure and intra- and intercellular signaling were determined. Coincubation with E. faecium abolished the ETEC-induced decrease in transepithelial resistance (Rt) (). No differences were seen in the expression levels of the intercellular connecting tight junction proteins examined. However, for the first time, a reorganization of the monolayer was observed in ETEC-infected cells but not in coincubated cells. ETEC induced an increase in cytotoxicity that was prevented by coincubation (), whereas apoptosis rates were not affected by bacterial treatment. ETEC increased the mRNA expression and release of proinflammatory cytokines TNF-α, IL-1α, and IL-6 which could be prevented by coincubation for TNF-α mRNA expression and IL-6 protein (). Likewise, cAMP concentrations elevated by ETEC were reduced in coincubated cells (). These findings indicate a protective effect of the probiotic E. faecium on inflammatory responses during infection with ETEC. Martina Kern, Dorothee Günzel, Jörg R. Aschenbach, Karsten Tedin, Angelika Bondzio, and Ulrike Lodemann Copyright © 2017 Martina Kern et al. All rights reserved. Endogenous IL-33 Deficiency Exacerbates Liver Injury and Increases Hepatic Influx of Neutrophils in Acute Murine Viral Hepatitis Sun, 21 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 The alarmin IL-33 has been described to be upregulated in human and murine viral hepatitis. However, the role of endogenous IL-33 in viral hepatitis remains obscure. We aimed to decipher its function by infecting IL-33-deficient mice (IL-33 KO) and their wild-type (WT) littermates with pathogenic mouse hepatitis virus (L2-MHV3). The IL-33 KO mice were more sensitive to L2-MHV3 infection exhibiting higher levels of AST/ALT, higher tissue damage, significant weight loss, and earlier death. An increased depletion of B and T lymphocytes, NKT cells, dendritic cells, and macrophages was observed 48 h postinfection (PI) in IL-33 KO mice than that in WT mice. In contrast, a massive influx of neutrophils was observed in IL-33 KO mice at 48 h PI. A transcriptomic study of inflammatory and cell-signaling genes revealed the overexpression of IL-6, TNFα, and several chemokines involved in recruitment/activation of neutrophils (CXCL2, CXCL5, CCL2, and CCL6) at 72 h PI in IL-33 KO mice. However, the IFNγ was strongly induced in WT mice with less profound expression in IL-33 KO mice demonstrating that endogenous IL-33 regulated IFNγ expression during L2-MHV3 hepatitis. In conclusion, we demonstrated that endogenous IL-33 had multifaceted immunoregulatory effect during viral hepatitis via induction of IFNγ, survival effect on immune cells, and infiltration of neutrophils in the liver. Virginie Carrière, Muhammad Imran Arshad, Jacques Le Seyec, Benjamin Lefevre, Muhammad Farooq, Aurélien Jan, Christelle Manuel, Laurence Touami-Bernard, Catherine Lucas-Clerc, Valentine Genet, Hugues Gascan, Jean-Philippe Girard, Frédéric Chalmel, Lucie Lamontagne, Claire Piquet-Pellorce, and Michel Samson Copyright © 2017 Virginie Carrière et al. All rights reserved. Challenging a Misnomer? The Role of Inflammatory Pathways in Inflammatory Breast Cancer Sun, 21 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Inflammatory breast cancer is a rare, yet highly aggressive form of breast cancer, which accounts for less than 5% of all locally advanced presentations. The clinical presentation of inflammatory breast cancer often differs significantly from that of noninflammatory breast cancer; however, immunohistochemistry reveals few, if any, distinguishing features. The more aggressive triple-negative and HER2-positive breast cancer subtypes are overrepresented in inflammatory breast cancer compared with noninflammatory breast cancer, with a poorer prognosis in response to conventional therapies. Despite its name, there remains some controversy regarding the role of inflammation in inflammatory breast cancer. This review summarises the current molecular evidence suggesting that inflammatory signaling pathways are upregulated in this disease, including NF-κB activation and excessive IL-6 production among others, which may provide an avenue for novel therapeutics. The role of the tumor microenvironment, through tumor-associated macrophages, infiltrating lymphocytes, and cancer stem cells is also discussed, suggesting that these tumor extrinsic factors may help account for the differences in behavior between inflammatory breast cancer and noninflammatory breast cancer. While there are various novel treatment strategies already underway in clinical trials, the need for further development of preclinical models of this rare but aggressive disease is paramount. Riley J. Morrow, Nima Etemadi, Belinda Yeo, and Matthias Ernst Copyright © 2017 Riley J. Morrow et al. All rights reserved. Cysteinyl Leukotrienes as Potential Pharmacological Targets for Cerebral Diseases Thu, 18 May 2017 10:47:13 +0000 Cysteinyl leukotrienes (CysLTs) are potent lipid mediators widely known for their actions in asthma and in allergic rhinitis. Accumulating data highlights their involvement in a broader range of inflammation-associated diseases such as cancer, atopic dermatitis, rheumatoid arthritis, and cardiovascular diseases. The reported elevated levels of CysLTs in acute and chronic brain lesions, the association between the genetic polymorphisms in the LTs biosynthesis pathways and the risk of cerebral pathological events, and the evidence from animal models link also CysLTs and brain diseases. This review will give an overview of how far research has gone into the evaluation of the role of CysLTs in the most prevalent neurodegenerative disorders (ischemia, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, multiple sclerosis/experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis, and epilepsy) in order to understand the underlying mechanism by which they might be central in the disease progression. Paolo Gelosa, Francesca Colazzo, Elena Tremoli, Luigi Sironi, and Laura Castiglioni Copyright © 2017 Paolo Gelosa et al. All rights reserved. Antitumor Macrophage Response to Bacillus pumilus Ribonuclease (Binase) Thu, 18 May 2017 02:39:37 +0000 Extracellular bacterial ribonucleases such as binase from Bacillus pumilus possess cytotoxic activity against tumor cells with a potential for clinical application. Moreover, they may induce activation of tumor-derived macrophages either into the M1-phenotype with well-documented functions in the regulation of the antitumor immune response or into M2-macrophages that may stimulate tumor growth, metastasis, and angiogenesis. In this study, binase or endogenous RNase1 (but not RNA or short oligonucleotides) stimulated the expression of activated NF-κB p65 subunit in macrophages. Since no changes in MyD88 and TRIF adaptor protein expression were observed, toll-like receptors may not be involved in RNase-related NF-κB pathway activation. In addition, short exposure (0.5 hr) to binase induced the release of cytokines such as IL-6, МСР-1, or TNF-α (but not IL-4 and IL-10), indicative for the polarization into antitumor M1-macrophages. Thus, we revealed increased expression of activated NF-κB p65 subunit in macrophages upon stimulation by binase and RNase1, but not RNA or short oligonucleotides. Anna Makeeva, Hector A. Cabrera-Fuentes, Julian Rodriguez-Montesinos, Pavel Zelenikhin, Alexander Nesmelov, Klaus T. Preissner, and Olga N. Ilinskaya Copyright © 2017 Anna Makeeva et al. All rights reserved. A Double-Blinded Randomized Study Investigating a Possible Anti-Inflammatory Effect of Saxagliptin versus Placebo as Add-On Therapy in Patients with Both Type 2 Diabetes And Stable Coronary Artery Disease Wed, 17 May 2017 06:50:09 +0000 Background. Promising results regarding potential anti-inflammatory and antiatherosclerotic effects of gliptins have been reported. Our aim was to investigate whether saxagliptin treatment modifies expression of inflammatory markers, primarily in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and in circulating leukocytes in patients with stable coronary artery disease (CAD) and T2DM. Methods. Patients () were randomized to saxagliptin 5 mg daily or placebo for 3 months. Samples were taken at baseline and end of study in fasting state prior to intake of medications. PBMCs were isolated and cryopreserved at −150°C until ex vivo exposed to 1 ng/mL of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) for 4 hours. Gene expression was performed with custom-designed TaqMan® Arrays and relative quantification by real-time PCR (RT-qPCR). Results. HbA1c was reduced in the saxagliptin-treated group compared to that in the change with placebo (). In unstimulated PBMCs and in circulating leukocytes, we observed a significant increase in IL-10 expression in the saxagliptin group (, both), significantly different from that in the placebo ( and , resp.). No between group differences in changes were observed in any of the selected proinflammatory markers. Conclusion. In our small cohort of patients with combined T2DM and CAD, a possible anti-inflammatory effect of saxagliptin, observed in the present study by upregulation of IL-10 in leukocytes, needs to be confirmed in larger studies. Ida Unhammer Njerve, Sissel Åkra, Thomas W. Weiss, Svein Solheim, Reidun Øvstebø, Hans Christian D. Aass, Rune Byrkjeland, Harald Arnesen, and Ingebjørg Seljeflot Copyright © 2017 Ida Unhammer Njerve et al. All rights reserved. Gene Electrotransfer of Plasmid-Encoding IL-12 Recruits the M1 Macrophages and Antigen-Presenting Cells Inducing the Eradication of Aggressive B16F10 Murine Melanoma Wed, 17 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Cancer immunotherapy is currently one of the leading approaches in cancer treatment. Gene electrotransfer of plasmids encoding interleukin 12 (IL-12) into the cells leads to the production of IL-12, which drives immune cell polarization to an antitumoral response. One of the cell types that shows great promise in targeting tumor cells under the influence of IL-12 cytokine milieu is that of macrophages. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate gene electrotransfer of antibiotic resistance-free plasmid DNA-encoding murine IL-12 (mIL-12) in mice bearing aggressive B16F10 murine melanoma. IL-12 electrotransfer resulted in the complete long-term eradication of the tumors. Serum mIL-12 and murine interferon γ (mIFNγ) were increased after IL-12 gene electrotransfer. Further on, hematoxylin and eosin (HE) staining showed increased infiltration of immune cells that lasted from day 4 until day 14. Immunohistochemistry (IHC) staining of F4/80, MHCII, and CD11c showed higher positive staining in the IL-12 gene electrotransfer group than in the control groups. Immune cell infiltration into the tumors and the high density of MHCII- and CD11c-positive cells suggest an antitumor polarization of macrophages and the presence of antigen-presenting cells that contributes to the important antitumor effectiveness of IL-12. Ursa Lampreht Tratar, Luisa Loiacono, Maja Cemazar, Urska Kamensek, Vito Michele Fazio, Gregor Sersa, and Emanuela Signori Copyright © 2017 Ursa Lampreht Tratar et al. All rights reserved. A Reduction in Selenoprotein S Amplifies the Inflammatory Profile of Fast-Twitch Skeletal Muscle in the mdx Dystrophic Mouse Tue, 16 May 2017 07:04:43 +0000 Excessive inflammation is a hallmark of muscle myopathies, including Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). There is interest in characterising novel genes that regulate inflammation due to their potential to modify disease progression. Gene polymorphisms in Selenoprotein S (Seps1) are associated with elevated proinflammatory cytokines, and in vitro SEPS1 is protective against inflammatory stress. Given that SEPS1 is highly expressed in skeletal muscle, we investigated whether the genetic reduction of Seps1 exacerbated inflammation in the mdx mouse. F1 male mdx mice with a heterozygous Seps1 deletion (mdx:Seps1−/+) were generated. The mdx:Seps1−/+ mice had a 50% reduction in SEPS1 protein expression in hindlimb muscles. In the extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscles, mRNA expression of monocyte chemoattractant protein 1 (Mcp-1) (), macrophage marker F4/80 (), and transforming growth factor-β1 (Tgf-β1) () were increased in mdx:Seps1−/+ mice. This was associated with a reduction in muscle fibre size; however, ex vivo EDL muscle strength and endurance were unaltered. In dystrophic slow twitch soleus muscles, SEPS1 reduction had no effect on the inflammatory profile nor function. In conclusion, the genetic reduction of Seps1 appears to specifically exacerbate the inflammatory profile of fast-twitch muscle fibres, which are typically more vulnerable to degeneration in dystrophy. Craig Robert Wright, Giselle Larissa Allsopp, Alex Bernard Addinsall, Natasha Lee McRae, Sofianos Andrikopoulos, and Nicole Stupka Copyright © 2017 Craig Robert Wright et al. All rights reserved. Persistent Unresolved Inflammation in the Mecp2-308 Female Mutated Mouse Model of Rett Syndrome Tue, 16 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Rett syndrome (RTT) is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder usually caused by mutations in the X-linked gene methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2). Several Mecp2 mutant mouse lines have been developed recapitulating part of the clinical features. In particular, Mecp2-308 female heterozygous mice, bearing a truncating mutation, are a validated model of the disease. While recent data suggest a role for inflammation in RTT, little information on the inflammatory status in murine models of the disease is available. Here, we investigated the inflammatory status by proteomic 2-DE/MALDI-ToF/ToF analyses in symptomatic Mecp2-308 female mice. Ten differentially expressed proteins were evidenced in the Mecp2-308 mutated plasma proteome. In particular, 5 positive acute-phase response (APR) proteins increased (i.e., kininogen-1, alpha-fetoprotein, mannose-binding protein C, alpha-1-antitrypsin, and alpha-2-macroglobulin), and 3 negative APR reactants were decreased (i.e., serotransferrin, albumin, and apolipoprotein A1). CD5 antigen-like and vitamin D-binding protein, two proteins strictly related to inflammation, were also changed. These results indicate for the first time a persistent unresolved inflammation of unknown origin in the Mecp2-308 mouse model. Alessio Cortelazzo, Claudio De Felice, Bianca De Filippis, Laura Ricceri, Giovanni Laviola, Silvia Leoncini, Cinzia Signorini, Monica Pescaglini, Roberto Guerranti, Anna Maria Timperio, Lello Zolla, Lucia Ciccoli, and Joussef Hayek Copyright © 2017 Alessio Cortelazzo et al. All rights reserved. Activated Platelets Induce an Anti-Inflammatory Response of Monocytes/Macrophages through Cross-Regulation of PGE2 and Cytokines Tue, 16 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Platelets are well known for their role in hemostasis and are also increasingly recognized for their roles in the innate immune system during inflammation and their regulation of macrophage activation. Here, we aimed to study the influence of platelets on the production of inflammatory mediators by monocytes and macrophages. Analyzing cocultures of platelets and murine bone marrow-derived macrophages or human monocytes, we found that collagen-activated platelets release high amounts of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) that leads to an increased interleukin- (IL-) 10 release and a decreased tumor necrosis factor (TNF) α secretion out of the monocytes or macrophages. Platelet PGE2 mediated the upregulation of IL-10 in both cell types via the PGE2 receptor EP2. Notably, PGE2-mediated IL-10 synthesis was also mediated by EP4 in murine macrophages. Inhibition of TNFα synthesis via EP2 and EP4, but not EP1, was mediated by IL-10, since blockade of the IL-10 receptor abolished the inhibitory effect of both receptors on TNFα release. This platelet-mediated cross-regulation between PGE2 and cytokines reveals one mechanism how monocytes and macrophages can attenuate excessive inflammatory responses induced by activated platelets in order to limit inflammatory processes. Bona Linke, Yannick Schreiber, Bettina Picard-Willems, Patrick Slattery, Rolf M. Nüsing, Sebastian Harder, Gerd Geisslinger, and Klaus Scholich Copyright © 2017 Bona Linke et al. All rights reserved. Distinct Roles of Wnt/β-Catenin Signaling in the Pathogenesis of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Mon, 15 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Wnt signaling pathways are tightly controlled under a physiological condition, under which they play key roles in many biological functions, including cell fate specification and tissue regeneration. Increasing lines of evidence recently demonstrated that a dysregulated activation of Wnt signaling, particularly the Wnt/β-catenin signaling, was involved in the pathogenesis of chronic pulmonary diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). In this respect, Wnt signaling interacts with other cellular signaling pathways to regulate the initiation and pathogenic procedures of airway inflammation and remodeling, pulmonary myofibroblast proliferation, epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), and development of emphysema. Intriguingly, Wnt/β-catenin signaling is activated in IPF; an inhibition of this signaling leads to an alleviation of pulmonary inflammation and fibrosis in experimental models. Conversely, Wnt/β-catenin signaling is inactivated in COPD tissues, and its reactivation results in an amelioration of airspace enlargement with a restored alveolar epithelial structure and function in emphysema models. These studies thus imply distinct mechanisms of Wnt/β-catenin signaling in the pathogenesis of these two chronic pulmonary diseases, indicating potential targets for COPD and IPF treatments. This review article aims to summarize the involvement and pathogenic roles of Wnt signaling pathways in the COPD and IPF, with a focus on the implication of Wnt/β-catenin signaling as underlying mechanisms and therapeutic targets in these two incurable diseases. Juan Shi, Feng Li, Meihui Luo, Jun Wei, and Xiaoming Liu Copyright © 2017 Juan Shi et al. All rights reserved. Elevated Glucose and Interleukin-1β Differentially Affect Retinal Microglial Cell Proliferation Mon, 15 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Diabetic retinopathy is considered a neurovascular disorder, hyperglycemia being considered the main risk factor for this pathology. Diabetic retinopathy also presents features of a low-grade chronic inflammatory disease, including increased levels of cytokines in the retina, such as interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β). However, how high glucose and IL-1β affect the different retinal cell types remains to be clarified. In retinal neural cell cultures, we found that IL-1β and IL-1RI are present in microglia, macroglia, and neurons. Exposure of retinal neural cell cultures to high glucose upregulated both mRNA and protein levels of IL-1β. High glucose decreased microglial and macroglial cell proliferation, whereas IL-1β increased their proliferation. Interestingly, under high glucose condition, although the number of microglial cells decreased, they showed a less ramified morphology, suggesting a more activated state, as supported by the upregulation of the levels of ED-1, a marker of microglia activation. In conclusion, IL-1β might play a key role in diabetic retinopathy, affecting microglial and macroglial cells and ultimately contributing to neural changes observed in diabetic patients. Particularly, since IL-1β has an important role in retinal microglia activation and proliferation under diabetes, limiting IL-1β-triggered inflammatory processes may provide a new therapeutic strategy to prevent the progression of diabetic retinopathy. Filipa I. Baptista, Célia A. Aveleira, Áurea F. Castilho, and António F. Ambrósio Copyright © 2017 Filipa I. Baptista et al. All rights reserved. Analysis of Microarray-Identified Genes and MicroRNAs Associated with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Sun, 14 May 2017 09:48:43 +0000 The aim of this study was to identify potential microRNAs and genes associated with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) through web-available microarrays. The microRNA microarray dataset GSE32538 and the mRNA datasets GSE32537, GSE53845, and GSE10667 were downloaded from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database. Differentially expressed miRNAs (DE-miRNAs)/genes (DEGs) were screened with GEO2R, and their associations with IPF were analyzed by comprehensive bioinformatic analyses. A total of 45 DE-microRNAs were identified between IPF and control tissues, whereas 67 common DEGs were determined to exhibit the same expression trends in all three microarrays. Furthermore, functional analysis indicated that microRNAs in cancer and ECM-receptor interaction were the most significant pathways and were enriched by the 45 DE-miRNAs and 67 common DEGs. Finally, we predicted potential microRNA-target interactions between 17 DE-miRNAs and 17 DEGs by using at least three online programs. A microRNA-mediated regulatory network among the DE-miRNAs and DEGs was constructed that might shed new light on potential biomarkers for the prediction of IPF progression. Lichao Fan, Xiaoting Yu, Ziling Huang, Shaoqiang Zheng, Yongxin Zhou, Hanjing Lv, Yu Zeng, Jin-Fu Xu, Xuyou Zhu, and Xianghua Yi Copyright © 2017 Lichao Fan et al. All rights reserved. Glycoprotein YKL-40 Levels in Plasma Are Associated with Fibrotic Changes on HRCT in Asbestos-Exposed Subjects Sun, 14 May 2017 09:42:39 +0000 YKL-40 is a chitinase-like glycoprotein produced by alternatively activated macrophages that are associated with wound healing and fibrosis. Asbestosis is a chronic asbestos-induced lung disease, in which injury of epithelial cells and activation of alveolar macrophages lead to enhanced collagen production and fibrosis. We studied if YKL-40 is related to inflammation, fibrosis, and/or lung function in subjects exposed to asbestosis. Venous blood samples were collected from 85 men with moderate or heavy occupational asbestos exposure and from 28 healthy, age-matched controls. Levels of plasma YKL-40, CRP, IL-6, adipsin, and MMP-9 were measured with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Plasma YKL-40 levels were significantly higher in subjects with asbestosis () than in those with no fibrotic findings in HRCT following asbestos exposure () or in unexposed healthy controls. In asbestos-exposed subjects, plasma YKL-40 correlated negatively with lung function capacity parameters FVC (Pearson’s r −0.259, ) and FEV1 (Pearson’s r −0.240, ) and positively with CRP (Spearman’s rho 0.371, ), IL-6 (Spearman’s rho 0.314, ), adipsin (Spearman’s rho 0.459, ), and MMP-9 (Spearman’s rho 0.243, ). The present finding suggests YKL-40 as a biomarker associated with fibrosis and inflammation in asbestos-exposed subjects. Tuija Väänänen, Lauri Lehtimäki, Katriina Vuolteenaho, Mari Hämäläinen, Panu Oksa, Tuula Vierikko, Ritva Järvenpää, Jukka Uitti, Hannu Kankaanranta, and Eeva Moilanen Copyright © 2017 Tuija Väänänen et al. All rights reserved. Methylprednisolone Administration Following Spinal Cord Injury Reduces Aquaporin 4 Expression and Exacerbates Edema Wed, 10 May 2017 07:50:37 +0000 Spinal cord injury (SCI) is an incapacitating condition that affects motor, sensory, and autonomic functions. Since 1990, the only treatment administered in the acute phase of SCI has been methylprednisolone (MP), a synthetic corticosteroid that has anti-inflammatory effects; however, its efficacy remains controversial. Although MP has been thought to help in the resolution of edema, there are no scientific grounds to support this assertion. Aquaporin 4 (AQP4), the most abundant component of water channels in the CNS, participates in the formation and elimination of edema, but it is not clear whether the modulation of AQP4 expression by MP plays any role in the physiopathology of SCI. We studied the functional expression of AQP4 modulated by MP following SCI in an experimental model in rats along with the associated changes in the permeability of the blood-spinal cord barrier. We analyzed these effects in male and female rats and found that SCI increased AQP4 expression in the spinal cord white matter and that MP diminished such increase to baseline levels. Moreover, MP increased the extravasation of plasma components after SCI and enhanced tissue swelling and edema. Our results lend scientific support to the increasing motion to avoid MP treatment after SCI. Eibar Ernesto Cabrera-Aldana, Fernando Ruelas, Cristina Aranda, Ruth Rincon-Heredia, Angelina Martínez-Cruz, Alejandro Reyes-Sánchez, Gabriel Guizar-Sahagún, and Luis B. Tovar-y-Romo Copyright © 2017 Eibar Ernesto Cabrera-Aldana et al. All rights reserved. Specific Gene- and MicroRNA-Expression Pattern Contributes to the Epithelial to Mesenchymal Transition in a Rat Model of Experimental Colitis Wed, 10 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 The aim of this study was to determine the gene- and microRNA-expression profile contributing to epithelial to mesenchymal transition in a rat model of experimental colitis. For this, inflammation was induced by injecting 2,4,6-trinitrobenzene sulphonic acid to the colon of male Wistar rats. Samples were taken from both inflamed and uninflamed regions of the same colon, total RNA was isolated, and the mRNA and microRNA expressions were monitored. We have determined that the expression of genes responsible for inducing mesenchymal phenotype, such as Egr1, Fgf2, Fgf7, Jak2, Notch2, Hif1α, Zeb2, Mmp9, Lox, and Vim, was all significantly induced in the inflamed regions of the affected colons while the epithelial marker E-cadherin (Cdh1) was downregulated. In contrast, the expression of microRNAs miR-192, miR-143, miR-375, miR-30a, miR-107, and miR-200b responsible for the regulation of the above mentioned genes was significantly downregulated in inflamed colon. Importantly, we detected moderate induction in the expression of five out of six tested microRNAs in the uninflamed regions. In summary, we identified numerous interacting genes and microRNAs with mutually exclusive expression pattern in inflamed regions of colitis-induced rats. These findings suggest that—among others—an important step in the epithelial to mesenchymal transition in experimental colitis is the dysregulated microRNA expression. Éva Boros, Marianna Csatári, Csaba Varga, Balázs Bálint, and István Nagy Copyright © 2017 Éva Boros et al. All rights reserved. Buprenorphine Alters Inflammatory and Oxidative Stress Molecular Markers in Arthritis Tue, 09 May 2017 07:55:10 +0000 Buprenorphine is recommended for use as an analgesic in animal models including in murine models of collagen-induced arthritis (CIA). However, the effect of buprenorphine on the expression of disease-associated biomarkers is not well defined. We examined the effect of buprenorphine administration on disease progression and the expression of inflammatory and oxidative stress markers, in a murine model of CIA. Buprenorphine administration altered the expression of cytokines, IFN-γ, IL-6, and MMP-3, and oxidative markers, for example, iNOS, superoxide dismutase (SOD1), and catalase (CAT), in the CIA mice. As buprenorphine is an analgesic, we further monitored the association of expression of these biomarkers with pain scores in a human cohort of early rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Serum MMP-3 levels and blood mRNA expression of antioxidants sod1 and cat correlated with pain scores in the RA cohort. We have demonstrated that administration of buprenorphine alters the expression of inflammatory and oxidative stress-related molecular markers in a murine model of CIA. This caveat needs to be considered in animal experiments using buprenorphine as an analgesic, as it can be a confounding factor in murine studies used for prediction of response to therapy. Furthermore, the antioxidant enzymes that showed an association with pain scores in the human cohort may be explored as biomarkers for pain in future studies. Mahadevappa Hemshekhar, Vidyanand Anaparti, Carol Hitchon, and Neeloffer Mookherjee Copyright © 2017 Mahadevappa Hemshekhar et al. All rights reserved. Stigmasterol Modulates Allergic Airway Inflammation in Guinea Pig Model of Ovalbumin-Induced Asthma Sun, 07 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 We explored the potential benefits of stigmasterol in the treatment of asthma, an airway disorder characterized by immune pathophysiology and with an ever-increasing worldwide prevalence. We assessed the modulatory effect of the intraperitoneal administration of stigmasterol on experimentally induced airway inflammation in guinea pigs. The effect of stigmasterol on inflammatory cell proliferation, oxidative stress, lung histopathology, and remodeling was investigated. The results showed significant suppressive effects on ovalbumin-induced airway inflammatory damage. Stigmasterol at 10–100 mg/kg reduced proliferation of eosinophils, lymphocytes, and monocytes while reducing peribronchiolar, perivascular, and alveolar infiltration of inflammatory cells. Histopathology revealed stigmasterol maintained lung architecture and reversed collagen deposition, an index of lung remodeling. Overexpression of serum vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 (VCAM-1) and ovalbumin-specific immunoglobulin E (OVA sIgE) elicited by ovalbumin sensitization and challenge was significantly controlled with stigmasterol. Taken together, stigmasterol possessed significant antiasthmatic properties and had suppressive effects on key features of allergen-induced asthma. Aaron Opoku Antwi, David Darko Obiri, and Newman Osafo Copyright © 2017 Aaron Opoku Antwi et al. All rights reserved. The Distribution of Activation Markers and Selectins on Peripheral T Lymphocytes in Preeclampsia Sun, 07 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 Introduction. Impaired maternal immune tolerance resulting in systemic inflammation plays a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of preeclampsia. Phenotypical changes of monocytes and neutrophil granulocytes have already been studied in preeclampsia, and some studies also included T lymphocyte activation markers; however, the results are controversial and a comprehensive analysis of activation markers is lacking. The characteristics of cellular adhesion molecules in preeclampsia are yet to be described. Material and Methods. Peripheral blood samples of 18 preeclamptic patients and 20 healthy pregnant women in the third trimester were evaluated using flow cytometry to characterize the cell surface expression of T lymphocyte activation markers and selectins. Results. We found an elevated ratio of HLA-DR and CD122-, CD62E-, and CD62L-expressing cells among the CD4+ T lymphocytes in PE in comparison to healthy pregnancy. No alterations were found in the prevalence of CD69-, CD25-, and CD62P-expressing lymphocytes and CD11c-expressing monocytes. Conclusions. Our findings support the role of activated T lymphocytes and specific cell adhesion molecules in the pathogenesis of preeclampsia. Anna Bajnok, Maria Ivanova, János Rigó Jr., and Gergely Toldi Copyright © 2017 Anna Bajnok et al. All rights reserved. Endothelial Alterations in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus and Rheumatoid Arthritis: Potential Effect of Monocyte Interaction Thu, 04 May 2017 08:43:31 +0000 Patients with systemic autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) are prone to develop atherosclerosis and cardiovascular diseases five times more often than the general population; this increase in frequency could be partially explained by an increase in the macrovasculature endothelial damage. In these autoimmune diseases, a microvascular endothelial injury has also been reported in different organs and tissues, especially in sites where ultrafiltration processes occur. Different components that are characteristic to the immunopathology of RA and SLE could be involved in the endothelial cell activation, permeability increase, functional alteration, and vascular injury. Circulating immune complexes (IC) detected in SLE and RA have been proposed to participate in the endothelial injury. In the vascular environment, IC can generate different responses that could be mediated by monocytes, because these cells have patrolling and monitoring functions on the endothelium. However, with certain stimuli such as TLR ligands, the monocytes are retained in the lumen, releasing proinflammatory mediators that participate in the endothelial damage. This paper aims to review some aspects about the endothelial activation and dysfunction in the context of SLE and RA, as well as the potential role that monocytes apparently play in this process. Laura Atehortúa, Mauricio Rojas, Gloria M. Vásquez, and Diana Castaño Copyright © 2017 Laura Atehortúa et al. All rights reserved. Statins Reduce Lipopolysaccharide-Induced Cytokine and Inflammatory Mediator Release in an In Vitro Model of Microglial-Like Cells Thu, 04 May 2017 00:00:00 +0000 The anti-inflammatory effects of statins (HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors) within the cardiovascular system are well-established; however, their neuroinflammatory potential is unclear. It is currently unknown whether statins’ neurological effects are lipid-dependent or due to pleiotropic mechanisms. Therefore, the assumption that all statin compounds will have the same effect within the central nervous system is potentially inappropriate, with no studies to date having compared all statins in a single model. Thus, the aim of this study was to compare the effects of the six statins (atorvastatin, fluvastatin, pitavastatin, pravastatin, rosuvastatin, and simvastatin) within a single in vitro model of neuroinflammation. To achieve this, PMA-differentiated THP-1 cells were used as surrogate microglial cells, and LPS was used to induce inflammatory conditions. Here, we show that pretreatment with all statins was able to significantly reduce LPS-induced interleukin (IL)-1β and tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α release, as well as decrease LPS-induced prostaglandin E2 (PGE2). Similarly, global reactive oxygen species (ROS) and nitric oxide (NO) production were decreased following pretreatment with all statins. Based on these findings, it is suggested that more complex cellular models should be considered to further compare individual statin compounds, including translation into in vivo models of acute and/or chronic neuroinflammation. A. J. McFarland, A. K. Davey, and S. Anoopkumar-Dukie Copyright © 2017 A. J. McFarland et al. All rights reserved.