The chemokine fractalkine inhibits Fas-mediated cell death of brain microglia.

Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc., San Diego, CA 92121, USA.
The Journal of Immunology (Impact Factor: 5.36). 08/2000; 165(1):397-403. DOI: 10.4049/jimmunol.165.1.397
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Fractalkine is a CX3C-family chemokine, highly and constitutively expressed on the neuronal cell surface, for which a clear CNS physiological function has yet to be determined. Its cognate receptor, CX3CR-1, is constitutively expressed on microglia, the brain-resident macrophages; however, these cells do not express fractalkine. We now show that treatment of microglia with fractalkine maintains cell survival and inhibits Fas ligand-induced cell death in vitro. Biochemical characterization indicates that this occurs via mechanisms that may include 1) activation of the phosphatidylinositol-3 kinase/protein kinase B pathway, resulting in phosphorylation and blockade of the proapoptotic functions of BAD; 2) up-regulation of the antiapoptotic protein Bcl-xL; and 3) inhibition of the cleavage of BH3-interacting domain death agonist (BID). The observation that fractalkine serves as a survival factor for primary microglia in part by modulating the protein levels and the phosphorylation status of Bcl-2 family proteins reveals a novel physiological role for chemokines. These results, therefore, suggest that the interaction between fractalkine and CX3CR-1 may play an important role in promoting and preserving microglial cell survival in the CNS.

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    ABSTRACT: Background: Recovery of lost neurological function after stroke is limited and dependent on multiple mechanisms including inflammatory processes. Selective pharmacological modulation of inflammation might be a promising approach to improve stroke outcome. Methods: We used 1,1′-[1,4-phenylenebis(methylene)]bis[1,4,8,11-tetraazacyclotetradecane] (AMD3100), an antagonist to the C-X-C chemokine receptor type 4 (CXCR4) and potential allosteric agonist to CXCR7, administered to mice twice daily from day 2 after induction of photothrombosis (PT). In addition to functional outcome, the dynamics of post-stroke microglia response were monitored in vivo by 2-photon-laser-microscopy in heterozygous transgenic CX3CR1-green fluorescent protein (GFP) mice (CX3CR1GFP/+) and complemented with analyses for fractalkine (FKN) and pro-inflammatory cytokines. Results: We found a significantly enhanced recovery and modified microglia activation without affecting infarct size in mice treated with AMD3100 after PT. AMD3100 treatment significantly reduced the number of microglia in the peri-infarct area accompanied by stabilization of soma size and ramified cell morphology. Within the ischemic infarct core of AMD3100 treated wild-type mice we obtained significantly reduced levels of the endogenous CX3CR1 ligand FKN and the pro-inflammatory cytokines interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-6. Interestingly, in CX3CR1-deficient mice (homozygous transgenic CX3CR1-GFP mice) subjected to PT, the levels of FKN were significantly lower compared to their wild-type littermates. Moreover, AMD3100 treatment did not induce any relevant changes of cytokine levels in CX3CR1 deficient mice. Conclusion: After AMD3100 treatment, attenuation of microglia activation contributes to enhanced recovery of lost neurological function in experimental stroke possibly due to a depression of FKN levels in the brain. We further hypothesize that this mechanism is dependent on a functional receptor CX3CR1.
    Journal of Neuroinflammation 02/2015; 12(24). · 4.90 Impact Factor
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