Author(s): Chen YM, HuTsai MI, Lin SL, Tsai TJ, Hsieh BS
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Mesangial cells (MCs) can promote glomerular macrophage accumulation in glomerulonephritis through production of a variety of chemokines. This study investigated the potential of MCs to synthesize CX3CL1/fractalkine, a CX3C chemokine, both in vitro and in acute anti-Thy1 glomerulonephritis in rats. METHODS: Anti-Thy1 glomerulonephritis was induced in Wistar rats by a single injection of mouse anti-rat Thy1.1 antibody intravenously. Glomerular mRNAs for CX3CL1/fractalkine, CCL2/monocyte chemoattractant protein (MCP)-1, and their cognate receptors, CX3CR1 and CCR2, were determined by northern blot analysis or reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction. CX3CL1/fractalkine mRNA and protein expression in vivo was localized by in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry. Monocytes/macrophages and activated MCs were detected by immunohistochemistry. Regulation of CX3CL1/fractalkine expression in cultured MCs was determined by northern and western blot analysis. RESULTS: After induction of anti-Thy1 disease, glomerular CX3CL1/fractalkine mRNA was significantly up-regulated, peaking at 2 h and sustaining into day 5 of the nephritis. A corresponding increase in urinary CX3CL1/fractalkine protein was evident after day 1 of the nephritis, but became more prominent during the MC proliferative phase (days 3-5). Meanwhile, induction of glomerular CCL2/MCP-1 mRNA and urinary CCL2/MCP-1 protein occurred within 24 h, and was barely detectable after day 3 of the nephritis. Urinary CCL2/MCP-1, but not CX3CL1/fractalkine, correlated with glomerular macrophage accumulation (r = 0.936, P<0.01) and glomerular CCR2 mRNA expression (r = 0.965, P<0.01). In contrast, only urinary CX3CL1/fractalkine coincided temporally to glomerular mRNA for CX3CR1 (r = 0.809, P < 0.01). Combined in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry revealed that activated MCs were a major source for CX3CL1/fractalkine mRNA and protein during days 3-5 of the nephritis. Incubation of cultured MCs with tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha, interleukin (IL)-1beta, platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-AB or basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) significantly up-regulated CX3CL1/fractalkine mRNA and protein expression. This cytokine- and growth factor-stimulated CX3CL1/fractalkine expression could be abolished by the nuclear factor-kappaB inhibitors, curcumin and MG132. CONCLUSIONS: Our data demonstrate that activated MCs are a source for the augmented glomerular CX3CL1/fractalkine expression during the proliferative phase of acute anti-Thy1 glomerulonephritis. Up-regulation of MC CX3CL1/fractalkine by TNF-alpha, IL-1beta, PDGF-AB and bFGF is mediated, at least in part, via the nuclear factor-kappaB signalling pathway. The differential expression of CCL2/MCP-1 and CX3CL1/fractalkine may sequentially recruit distinct subsets of monocytes to the glomerulus during acute anti-Thy1 glomerulonephritis.
This article was published in Nephrol Dial Transplant
and referenced in Journal of Nanomedicine & Nanotechnology