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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

AsialoGM1-Mediated IL-8 Release by Human Corneal Epithelial Cells Requires Coexpression of TLR5.

PURPOSE: In this study, it was determined that human corneal epithelial cells (HCECs) express asialoganglioside ganliotetraosylceramide (asialoGM1) and toll-like receptor (TLR)-5, and their interaction induces interleukin (IL)-8 release through Ca(2+) transient activation and mitogen-activated protein kinase ( MAPK) stimulation. METHODS: Expression of asialoGM1 and TLR5 was detected in SV40 HCECs by Western blot and flow cytometry analyses and their association by coimmunoprecipitation. Single-cell fluorescence imaging was used to measure intracellular free Ca(2+) transients in fura-2-loaded cells. The enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was used to quantify IL-8 production in both cultured and primary HCECs. RESULTS: The HCECs expressed both asialoGM1 and TLR5 receptors. Ligation of asialoGM1 resulted in protein-protein interaction with TLR5, followed by transient increases in Ca(2+) influx through L-type voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channels. This led to P2Y receptor stimulation along with membrane depolarization, resulting from increases in ATP release into the medium. Intracellular Ca(2+) transients led to time-dependent extracellular signal-regulated kinase ( ERK) MAPK pathway stimulation, followed by a 9.5-fold increase in IL-8 release. Similarly, in primary HCECs, asialoGM1 receptor stimulation resulted in an 8.1-fold increase. With a TLR5 neutralizing antibody, no asialoGM1-induced increases in IL-8 release occurred, and this response was not suppressed in the presence of a TLR2 neutralizing antibody. CONCLUSIONS: IL-8 release by HCECs is mediated through ligand- induced asialoGM1 protein-protein interactions with TLR5. This response is dependent on ATP efflux into the medium, followed by P2Y receptor stimulation. Such activation, in turn, results in increases in Ca(2+) influx through L-type voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channels, as well as stimulation of the ERK pathway.[1]


  1. AsialoGM1-Mediated IL-8 Release by Human Corneal Epithelial Cells Requires Coexpression of TLR5. Du, J.W., Zhang, F., Cap??-Aponte, J.E., Tachado, S.D., Zhang, J., Yu, F.S., Sack, R.A., Koziel, H., Reinach, P.S. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. (2006) [Pubmed]
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