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OBJECTIVE - Deletion of mPGES-1 (microsomal prostaglandin E synthase-1)-an anti-inflammatory target alternative to COX (cyclooxygenase)-2-attenuates injury-induced neointima formation in mice. This is attributable to the augmented levels of PGI (prostacyclin)-a known restraint of the vascular response to injury, acting via IP (I prostanoid receptor). To examine the role of mPGES-1-derived PGE (prostaglandin E) in vascular remodeling without the IP.
APPROACH AND RESULTS - Mice deficient in both IP and mPGES-1 (DKO [double knockout] and littermate controls [IP KO (knockout)]) were subjected to angioplasty wire injury. Compared with the deletion of IP alone, coincident deletion of IP and mPGES-1 increased neointima formation, without affecting media area. Early pathological changes include impaired reendothelialization and increased leukocyte invasion in neointima. Endothelial cells (ECs), but not vascular smooth muscle cells, isolated from DKOs exhibited impaired cell proliferation. Activation of EP (E prostanoid receptor) 4 (and EP2, to a lesser extent), but not of EP1 or EP3, promoted EC proliferation. EP4 antagonism inhibited proliferation of mPGES-1-competent ECs, but not of mPGES-1-deficient ECs, which showed suppressed PGE production. EP4 activation inhibited leukocyte adhesion to ECs in vitro, promoted reendothelialization, and limited neointima formation post-injury in the mouse. Endothelium-restricted deletion of EP4 in mice suppressed reendothelialization, increased neointimal leukocytes, and exacerbated neointimal formation.
CONCLUSIONS - Removal of the IP receptors unmasks a protective role of mPGES-1-derived PGE in limiting injury-induced vascular hyperplasia. EP4, in the endothelial compartment, is essential to promote reendothelialization and restrain neointimal formation after injury. Activating EP4 bears therapeutic potential to prevent restenosis after percutaneous coronary intervention.
© 2018 American Heart Association, Inc.
Allergic airway diseases are immune disorders associated with heightened type 2 immune responses and IL-5 and IL-13 production at the site of inflammation. We have previously reported that cyclooxygenase (COX) inhibition by indomethacin augmented allergic airway inflammation in a STAT6-independent manner. However, the key COX product(s) responsible for restraining indomethacin-mediated STAT6-independent allergic inflammation is unknown. In this study, using the mouse model of OVA-induced allergic airway inflammation, we identified that PGI2 receptor (IP) signaling was critical for indomethacin-induced, STAT6-independent proallergic effects. We demonstrated that IP deficiency increased inflammatory cell infiltration, eosinophilia, and IL-5 and IL-13 expression in the lung in a STAT6-independent manner. The augmented STAT6-independent allergic inflammation correlated with enhanced primary immune responses to allergic sensitization and elevated production of multiple inflammatory chemokines (CCL11, CCL17, CCL22, and CXCL12) in the lung after allergen challenge. We also showed that the PGI2 analogue cicaprost inhibited CD4 T cell proliferation and IL-5 and IL-13 expression in vitro, and IP deficiency diminished the stimulatory effect of indomethacin on STAT6-independent IL-5 and IL-13 responses in vivo. The inhibitory effects of PGI2 and the IP signaling pathway on CD4 T cell activation, inflammatory chemokine production, and allergic sensitization and airway inflammation suggest that PGI2 and its analogue iloprost, both Food and Drug Administration-approved drugs, may be useful in treating allergic diseases and asthma. In addition, inhibiting PGI2 signaling by drugs that either block PGI2 production or restrain IP signaling may augment STAT6-independent pathways of allergic inflammation.
Copyright © 2016 by The American Association of Immunologists, Inc.
Eicosanoids are important vascular regulators, but the phospholipase A2 (PLA2) isoforms supporting their production within the cardiovascular system are not fully understood. To address this, we have studied platelets, endothelial cells, and leukocytes from 2 siblings with a homozygous loss-of-function mutation in group IVA cytosolic phospholipase A2 (cPLA2α). Chromatography/mass spectrometry was used to determine levels of a broad range of eicosanoids produced by isolated vascular cells, and in plasma and urine. Eicosanoid release data were paired with studies of cellular function. Absence of cPLA2α almost abolished eicosanoid synthesis in platelets (e.g., thromboxane A2, control 20.5 ± 1.4 ng/ml vs. patient 0.1 ng/ml) and leukocytes [e.g., prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), control 21.9 ± 7.4 ng/ml vs. patient 1.9 ng/ml], and this was associated with impaired platelet activation and enhanced inflammatory responses. cPLA2α-deficient endothelial cells showed reduced, but not absent, formation of prostaglandin I2 (prostacyclin; control 956 ± 422 pg/ml vs. patient 196 pg/ml) and were primed for inflammation. In the urine, prostaglandin metabolites were selectively influenced by cPLA2α deficiency. For example, prostacyclin metabolites were strongly reduced (18.4% of control) in patients lacking cPLA2α, whereas PGE2 metabolites (77.8% of control) were similar to healthy volunteer levels. These studies constitute a definitive account, demonstrating the fundamental role of cPLA2α to eicosanoid formation and cellular responses within the human circulation.
BACKGROUND - The prevalence of allergic diseases has doubled in developed countries in the past several decades. Cyclooxygenase (COX)-inhibiting drugs augmented allergic diseases in mice by increasing allergic sensitization and memory immune responses. However, whether COX inhibition can promote allergic airway diseases by inhibiting immune tolerance is not known.
OBJECTIVE - To determine the role of the COX pathway and prostaglandin I2 (PGI2) signaling through the PGI2 receptor (IP) in aeroallergen-induced immune tolerance.
METHODS - Wild-type (WT) BALB/c mice and IP knockout mice were aerosolized with ovalbumin (OVA) to induce immune tolerance prior to immune sensitization with an intraperitoneal injection of OVA/alum. The COX inhibitor indomethacin or vehicle was administered in drinking water to inhibit enzyme activity during the sensitization phase. Two weeks after sensitization, the mice were challenged with OVA aerosols. Mouse bronchoalveolar lavage fluid was harvested for cell counts and TH2 cytokine measurements.
RESULTS - WT mice treated with indomethacin had greater numbers of total cells, eosinophils, and lymphocytes, and increased IL-5 and IL-13 protein expression in BAL fluid compared to vehicle-treated mice. Similarly, IP knockout mice had augmented inflammation and TH2 cytokine responses compared to WT mice. In contrast, the PGI2 analog cicaprost attenuated the anti-tolerance effect of COX inhibition.
CONCLUSION - COX inhibition abrogated immune tolerance by suppressing PGI2 IP signaling, suggesting that PGI2 signaling promotes immune tolerance and that clinical use of COX-inhibiting drugs may increase the risk of developing allergic diseases.
Copyright © 2014 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
BACKGROUND - Epoprostenol sodium with arginine-mannitol excipients (epoprostenol AM; Veletri [Actelion Pharmaceuticals Ltd, Allschwil, Switzerland]) and epoprostenol sodium with glycine-mannitol excipients (epoprostenol GM; Flolan [GlaxoSmithKline, Triangle Park, NC]) are intravenous treatments for pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Epoprostenol AM contains different inactive excipients, resulting in greater stability at room temperature compared with epoprostenol GM.
METHODS - In this prospective, multicenter, open-label, randomized, phase IV exploratory study, epoprostenol-naïve patients in need of injectable prostanoid therapy were randomized 2:1 to open-label epoprostenol AM or epoprostenol GM. The study period was 28 days, followed by a 30-day safety follow-up. Study aims were to descriptively compare the safety, tolerability, drug metabolite levels, and treatment effects of epoprostenol AM and epoprostenol GM in PAH. Statistical analysis was descriptive only because of the exploratory nature of the study.
RESULTS - Thirty patients with PAH (18-70 years, 24 women, 20 idiopathic PAH) were randomized to epoprostenol AM (n = 20) or epoprostenol GM (n = 10). Most frequently reported adverse events included jaw pain, headache, nausea, and flushing. Two deaths occurred during the study period, and 1 death occurred during the 30-day safety follow-up period, all in patients receiving epoprostenol AM. All deaths were classified by the treating physician as unrelated to epoprostenol AM. The median (range) change from baseline to day 28 in 6-minute walk distance was 36 m (-127 to 210 m) and 49 m (-44 to 110 m) for the epoprostenol AM and epoprostenol GM groups, respectively.
CONCLUSIONS - In this randomized clinical study of epoprostenol AM in PAH, use of this novel preparation with greater room temperature stability was well tolerated.
Despite major advances in understanding the mechanisms of disease and development of specific drug therapy, pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) remains a progressive, fatal disease. At present there are 3 classes of drug therapy for PAH: prostaglandins, endothelin receptor antagonists, and phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors. To maximize therapeutic benefit, and according to national and international guidelines, many patients are treated with combinations of these medications. This review presents a detailed account of the published data on the use of combination therapy in PAH. There are few randomized, placebo-controlled trial data to strongly support efficacy of most combination therapy, particularly oral combination therapy.
Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
PGI₂ signaling through IP inhibits allergen-induced inflammatory responses in mice. We reported previously that PGI₂ analogs decreased proinflammatory cytokine and chemokine production by mature BMDCs. However, whether PGI₂ modulates the function of immature DCs has not been investigated. We hypothesized that PGI2 negatively regulates immature DC function and investigated the effect of PGI2 analogs on immature BMDC antigen uptake and migration in vitro and in vivo. Immature BMDCs were obtained from WT and IPKO mice, both on a C57BL/6 background. The PGI2 analog cicaprost decreased FITC-OVA uptake by immature BMDCs. In addition, cicaprost increased immature BMDC podosome dissolution, pro-MMP-9 production, cell surface CCR7 expression, and chemotactic migration toward CCL19 and CCL21, as well as chemokinesis, in an IP-specific fashion. These in vitro results suggested that cicaprost promotes migration of immature DCs from mucosal surface to draining LNs. This concept was supported by the finding that migration of immature GFP⁺ BMDCs to draining LNs was enhanced by pretreatment with cicaprost. Further, migration of immature lung DCs labeled with PKH26 was enhanced by intranasal cicaprost administration. Our results suggest PGI2-IP signaling increases immature DC migration to the draining LNs and may represent a novel mechanism by which this eicosanoid inhibits immune responses.
Prostacyclin is an antithrombotic hormone produced by the endothelium, whose production is dependent on cyclooxygenase (COX) enzymes of which two isoforms exist. It is widely believed that COX-2 drives prostacyclin production and that this explains the cardiovascular toxicity associated with COX-2 inhibition, yet the evidence for this relies on indirect evidence from urinary metabolites. Here we have used a range of experimental approaches to explore which isoform drives the production of prostacyclin in vitro and in vivo. Our data show unequivocally that under physiological conditions it is COX-1 and not COX-2 that drives prostacyclin production in the cardiovascular system, and that urinary metabolites do not reflect prostacyclin production in the systemic circulation. With the idea that COX-2 in endothelium drives prostacyclin production in healthy individuals removed, we must seek new answers to why COX-2 inhibitors increase the risk of cardiovascular events to move forward with drug discovery and to enable more informed prescribing advice.
BACKGROUND - Prostaglandin I(2) (PGI(2)), a lipid mediator currently used in treatment of human disease, is a critical regulator of adaptive immune responses. Although PGI(2) signaling suppressed Th1 and Th2 immune responses, the role of PGI(2) in Th17 differentiation is not known.
METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS - In mouse CD4(+)CD62L(+) naïve T cell culture, the PGI(2) analogs iloprost and cicaprost increased IL-17A and IL-22 protein production and Th17 differentiation in vitro. This effect was augmented by IL-23 and was dependent on PGI(2) receptor IP signaling. In mouse bone marrow-derived CD11c(+) dendritic cells (BMDCs), PGI(2) analogs increased the ratio of IL-23/IL-12, which is correlated with increased ability of BMDCs to stimulate naïve T cells for IL-17A production. Moreover, IP knockout mice had delayed onset of a Th17-associated neurological disease, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), and reduced infiltration of IL-17A-expressing mononuclear cells in the spinal cords compared to wild type mice. These results suggest that PGI(2) promotes in vivo Th17 responses.
CONCLUSION - The preferential stimulation of Th17 differentiation by IP signaling may have important clinical implications as PGI(2) and its analogs are commonly used to treat human pulmonary hypertension.