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

TNF-alpha regulation of C3 gene expression and protein biosynthesis in rat glomerular endothelial cells.

Glomerular endothelial cells are an important site of interaction with the cellular and soluble components of inflammation. To investigate the capacity of these cells to synthesize complement they were cloned from isolated rat glomeruli. Messenger RNA (mRNA) was extracted from the cells, reverse transcribed and used as the template to identify specific gene transcripts with the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). mRNA coding for the third component of the complement cascade (C3) was detected in unstimulated endothelial cells, whereas no message for the fourth component ( C4) could be demonstrated. Using a semiquantitative method of PCR, we found that the expression of C3 is up-regulated by the cytokine tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), but not by the cytokines interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) and interleukin 1 alpha (IL-1 alpha). The increase in levels of C3 mRNA occurred in a time and dose dependent manner. This increase was dependent on new protein synthesis. Production of the C3 protein was demonstrated by radiolabeling and immunoprecipitation, and this also was stimulated by TNF-alpha. In conclusion, we demonstrate the production of C3 by microvascular endothelium of glomerular origin and its stimulation by TNF-alpha. We believe that this local synthesis could have a role in the pathogenesis of disease, however, the nature of this role at present remains unclear.[1]


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