alexa Beta-defensins 2 and 3 together promote resistance to Pseudomonas aeruginosa keratitis.


Journal of Microbial & Biochemical Technology

Author(s): Wu M, McClellan SA, Barrett RP, Zhang Y, Hazlett LD

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Abstract Defensins play an important role in both innate and adaptive immunity due to their antimicrobial, regulatory, and chemotactic effects. Nonetheless, the role of murine beta-defensins (mBD) 3 and 4, the murine homologs of human beta-defensins (hBD) 2 and 3, remains unknown in Pseudomonas aeruginosa keratitis. This study explored their role in corneal infection and potential synergy with mBD2, a defensin associated with better outcome in this disease. Immunostaining and real-time RT-PCR data demonstrated that mBD3 and mBD4 expression was inducible and differentially regulated in the infected cornea of resistant BALB/c vs susceptible C57BL/6 (B6) mice. Knockdown studies using small interfering RNA treatment indicated that mBD3, but not mBD4, is required in ocular defense. Moreover, in vivo studies demonstrated individual and combined effects of mBD2 and mBD3 that modulate bacterial load, polymorphonuclear neutrophil (PMN) infiltration, and production of IFN-gamma, MIP-2, IL-1beta, TNF-alpha, inducible NO synthase (iNOS), TLR2, TLR4, MyD88, and NF-kappaB. Most notably, bacterial load was increased at 5 days postinfection by silencing either mBD2 or mBD3, but it was elevated at both 1 and 5 days postinfection when silencing both defensins. PMN infiltration was increased at 1 day postinfection by silencing both defensins or mBD3, but not mBD2 alone. iNOS expression was elevated by silencing mBD2, but it was reduced after silencing mBD3 or both defensins. Additionally, cell sources of mBD2 (macrophages, PMN and fibroblasts) and mBD3 (PMN) in corneal stroma were identified by dual label immunostaining after infection. Collectively, the data provide evidence that mBD2 and mBD3 together promote resistance against corneal infection. This article was published in J Immunol and referenced in Journal of Microbial & Biochemical Technology

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