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1.  Genetic deletion of mPGES-1 abolishes PGE2 production in murine dendritic cells and alters the cytokine profile, but does not affect maturation or migration 
We undertook this study to determine the role of microsomal PGE synthase-1 (mPGES-1) and mPGES-1-generated prostaglandin (PG) E2 on dendritic cell (DC) phenotype and function. Using mPGES-1 knockout (KO) mice, we generated bone marrow derived DCs and determined their eicosanoid production profile, cell surface marker expression, and cytokine production. We also assessed DC migratory and functional capacity in vivo. Compared to wild-type, mPGES-1 deficient DCs exhibited a markedly attenuated increase in PGE2 production upon LPS stimulation, and displayed preferential shunting towards PGD2 production. mPGES-1 KO DCs did not display deficiencies in maturation, migration or ability to sensitize T cells. However, mPGES-1 deficient DCs generated reduced amounts of the Th1 cytokine IL-12, which may in part be due to increased PGD2 rather than decreased PGE2. These findings provide useful information on the effects of inducible PGE2 on the innate immune system, and have important implications regarding potential consequences of pharmacologic mPGES-1 inhibition.
PMCID: PMC3072052  PMID: 21190819
2.  Pathological and immunological effects of ingesting L-tryptophan and 1,1'-ethylidenebis (L-tryptophan) in Lewis rats. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1993;91(3):804-811.
The eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome (EMS) has been associated with ingestion of L-tryptophan (L-TRP) produced by a single manufacturer. Epidemiological data implicated 1,1'-ethylidenebis (L-tryptophan) (EBT) (peak 97 or peak E) as a possible etiologic agent. We showed previously that Lewis rats treated with the L-TRP implicated in EMS develop fasciitis and perimyositis similar to those seen in human EMS. We now report the pathology associated with the treatment of Lewis rats with synthetic EBT and/or L-TRP. All animals treated for 6 wk with case-associated L-TRP or EBT developed significant myofascial thickening, compared with animals in the vehicle control and control L-TRP groups. However, even those animals receiving the control L-TRP showed a mild but significant increase in the thickness of the myofascia, compared with vehicle-treated control animals. All animals except vehicle controls also exhibited significant pancreatic pathology, including fibrosis and acinar changes. Only animals treated with case-associated L-TRP for 6 wk showed evidence of immune activation with increased frequency of CD8, Ia, and IL-2 receptor-positive cells in the peripheral blood. Animals receiving L-TRP or EBT for < 6 wk did not show significant differences in myofascial thickness, although these animals did show pancreatic acinar changes. Although these results demonstrate for the first time the pathological effects of EBT, they do not rule out the possibility that other impurities in the EMS-case-associated L-TRP may also contribute to some of the features of EMS.
PMCID: PMC288031  PMID: 8450062
3.  L-tryptophan implicated in human eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome causes fasciitis and perimyositis in the Lewis rat. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1990;86(5):1757-1763.
Tryptophan-associated eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome (L-TRP-EMS) is a newly described syndrome which occurred in epidemic fashion in the United States in the summer and fall of 1989. Epidemiologic data has linked the syndrome to intake of L-tryptophan (L-TRP) from one specific manufacturer, but the precise etiologic compound(s) must be established by replication of the syndrome in an appropriate animal model. In this study, implicated L-TRP, United States Pharmacopeia (USP) grade L-TRP, or vehicle was administered by gavage in a blinded fashion for 38 d to female Lewis rats at doses comparable with those ingested by patients who developed the eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome. Animals receiving implicated L-TRP, but not those receiving USP grade L-TRP or vehicle, developed histologic signs consistent with fasciitis and perimyositis, specific pathologic features of human L-TRP-EMS. Peripheral blood eosinophilia was not observed. Hypothalamic corticotropin releasing hormone mRNA levels were lower and plasma corticosterone levels tended to be lower in the animals that received implicated L-TRP. Plasma L-kynurenine was higher in both L-TRP-treated groups compared to the vehicle-treated animals. The female Lewis rat is known to be susceptible to a wide variety of inflammatory diseases. Identification of specific inflammatory changes in this rat following exposure to implicated L-TRP indicates that this animal model will be important in subsequent investigations into the etiology, pathogenesis, and treatment of human L-TRP-EMS.
PMCID: PMC296930  PMID: 2243145
4.  Cultured lung fibroblasts isolated from patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis have a diminished capacity to synthesize prostaglandin E2 and to express cyclooxygenase-2. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1995;95(4):1861-1868.
Prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) inhibits fibroblast proliferation and collagen synthesis. In this study, we compared lung fibroblasts isolated from patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (F-IPF) and from patients undergoing resectional surgery for lung cancer (F-nl) with respect to their capacity for PGE2 synthesis and their expression and regulation of cyclooxygenase (COX) proteins. Basal COX activity, assessed by quantitating immunoreactive PGE2 synthesized from arachidonic acid, was twofold less (P < 0.05) in F-IPF than F-nl. In F-nl, incubation with the agonists PMA, LPS, or IL-1 increased COX activity and protein expression of the inducible form of COX, COX-2, and these responses were inhibited by coincubation with dexamethasone. By contrast, F-IPF failed to demonstrate increases in COX-2 protein expression or COX activity in response to these agonists. Under conditions of maximal induction, COX activity in F-IPF was sixfold less than that in F-nl (P < 0.05). Our data indicate that F-IPF have a striking defect in their capacity to synthesize the antiinflammatory and antifibrogenic molecule PGE2, apparently because of a diminished induction of COX-2 protein. This reduction in the endogenous capacity of F-IPF to down-regulate their function via PGE2 may contribute to the inflammatory and fibrogenic response in IPF. Moreover, we believe that this represents the first description of a defect in COX-2 expression in association with a human disease.
PMCID: PMC295728  PMID: 7706493
5.  Cyclooxygenase-1 and -2 expression in rheumatoid synovial tissues. Effects of interleukin-1 beta, phorbol ester, and corticosteroids. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1994;93(3):1095-1101.
High levels of immunoreactive cyclooxygenase (Cox; prostaglandin H synthase) are present in synovia from patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). We now show that the recently identified inducible isoform of Cox, Cox-2, is expressed in synovia from patients with RA. To further explore modulation of the Cox isoforms in RA synovial tissues, we examined the expression and modulation of Cox-1 and -2 in rheumatoid synovial explant cultures and cultured rheumatoid synovial fibroblast-like cells (synoviocytes). Immunoprecipitation of in vitro labeled proteins and Western blot analysis demonstrated the presence of both Cox-1 and -2 under basal conditions in freshly explanted rheumatoid synovial tissues. De novo synthesis of Cox-2 polypeptide was enhanced by IL-1 beta or PMA, and dramatically suppressed by dexamethasone (dex). Cox-1 expression, under the same conditions, showed only minor variation. Since mRNA for Cox-2 is highly unstable, we examined the regulation of Cox-2 transcripts in cultured rheumatoid synoviocytes. Under basal conditions both Cox-1 and -2 mRNAs were present at low levels, but Cox-2 mRNA was markedly increased by treatment with IL-1 beta or PMA. dex markedly suppressed the induction of Cox-2 mRNA. In sharp contrast, Cox-1 transcripts were not modulated by IL-1 beta or dex. These data suggest that modulation of Cox-2 expression by IL-1 beta and corticosteroids may be an important component of the inflammatory process in synovial tissues from patients with RA.
PMCID: PMC294048  PMID: 8132748
6.  Coexpression of phosphotyrosine-containing proteins, platelet-derived growth factor-B, and fibroblast growth factor-1 in situ in synovial tissues of patients with rheumatoid arthritis and Lewis rats with adjuvant or streptococcal cell wall arthritis. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1993;91(2):553-565.
Fibroblast growth factor (FGF)-1 and PDGF-B-like factors have been implicated in the pathobiology of RA and animal models of this disease. Since the receptors for FGF-1 and PDGF are tyrosine kinases, we examined the expression of tyrosine phosphorylated proteins (phosphotyrosine, P-Tyr) in synovial tissues from patients with RA and osteoarthritis (OA), and rats with streptococcal cell wall (SCW) and adjuvant arthritis (AA). Synovia from patients with RA and LEW/N rats with SCW and AA arthritis, in contrast to controls, stained intensely with anti-P-Tyr antibody. The staining colocalized with PDGF-B and FGF-1 staining. Comparative immunoblot analysis showed markedly enhanced expression of a 45-kD P-Tyr protein in the inflamed synovia. Treatment with physiological concentrations of dexamethasone suppressed both arthritis and P-Tyr expression in AA. P-Tyr was only transiently expressed in athymic nude Lewis rats and was not detected in relatively arthritis-resistant F344/N rats. These data suggest that (a) FGF-1 and PDGF-B-like factors are upregulated and may induce tyrosine phosphorylation of proteins in vivo in inflammatory joint diseases, (b) persistent high level P-Tyr expression is T lymphocyte dependent, correlates with disease severity, and is strain dependent in rats, (c) corticosteroids, in physiological concentrations, downregulate P-Tyr expression in these lesions.
PMCID: PMC287978  PMID: 7679410
7.  Local secretion of corticotropin-releasing hormone in the joints of Lewis rats with inflammatory arthritis. 
Journal of Clinical Investigation  1992;90(6):2555-2564.
Corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH), the principal regulator of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, is also secreted in peripheral inflammatory sites, where it acts as a local proinflammatory agent. Arthritis-susceptible LEW/N rats have profoundly deficient hypothalamic CRH responses to inflammatory stimuli and other stressors. Arthritis-resistant F344/N rats, on the other hand, have a robust increase in hypothalamic CRH in response to the same stimuli. Contrasting with these hypothalamic CRH responses, we now show that CRH expression is markedly increased in the joints and surrounding tissues of LEW/N rats with streptococcal cell wall- and adjuvant-induced arthritis, whereas it is not increased in similarly treated F344/N rats and is only transiently increased in congenitally athymic nude LEW.rnu/rnu rats. Glucocorticoid treatment suppressed, but did not eliminate, CRH immunoreactivity in the joints of LEW/N rats. CRH mRNA was present in inflamed synovia, as well as in spinal cord, and inflamed synovia also expressed specific CRH-binding sites. We compared CRH expression in inflamed joints with another well-characterized proinflammatory neuropeptide, substance P (SP), and found that SP immunoreactivity paralleled that of CRH. In summary, although LEW/N rats have deficient hypothalamic CRH responses to inflammatory stimuli compared with F344/N rats, they express relatively high levels of CRH at the site of inflammation. Analogous to SP, CRH may be delivered to the inflammatory site by peripheral nerves and/or synthesized at the inflammatory site. These data provide further support for the concept that CRH not only triggers the pituitary-adrenal antiinflammatory cascade, but also functions as an antithetically active local mediator of acute and chronic inflammatory arthritis. These data also illustrate the complex interrelationships of the nervous, endocrine, immune, and inflammatory systems.
PMCID: PMC443415  PMID: 1281840
8.  In vivo cyclooxygenase expression in synovial tissues of patients with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis and rats with adjuvant and streptococcal cell wall arthritis. 
Cyclooxygenase (COX), or prostaglandin (PG) H synthase, plays a role in inflammatory diseases, but very limited data exist on the regulation of COX in vivo. We, therefore, studied the in vivo expression of COX in synovia from patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and osteoarthritis (OA), as well as joints of rats with streptococcal cell wall (SCW) and adjuvant arthritis. Extensive and intense intracellular COX immunostaining, which correlated with the extent and intensity of mononuclear cell infiltration, was observed in cells throughout RA synovia. Significantly less or equivocal staining was noted in OA and normal human synovia. Similarly, COX immunostaining was equivocal in the joints of normal and arthritis-resistant F344/N rats. In contrast, high level expression developed rapidly in euthymic female Lewis (LEW/N) rats throughout the hindlimb joints and overlying tissues including skin, preceding or paralleling clinically apparent experimental arthritis. COX was expressed in the joints of athymic LEW.rnu/rnu rats 2-4 d after injection of SCW or adjuvant but was not sustained. Physiological doses of antiinflammatory glucocorticoids, but not progesterone, suppressed both arthritis and COX expression in LEW/N rats. These observations suggest that, in vivo, (a) COX expression is upregulated in inflammatory joint diseases, (b) the level of expression is genetically controlled and is a biochemical correlate of disease severity, (c) sustained high level up-regulation is T cell dependent, and (d) expression is down-regulated by antiinflammatory glucocorticoids.
PMCID: PMC442824  PMID: 1729286

Results 1-8 (8)