An NT4/TrkB-dependent increase in innervation links early-life allergen exposure to persistent airway hyperreactivity
*The Pulmonary Center, Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts, USAThe FASEB Journal (Impact Factor: 5.04). 11/2013; 28(2). DOI: 10.1096/fj.13-238212
Children who are exposed to environmental respiratory insults often develop asthma that persists into adulthood. In this study, we used a neonatal mouse model of ovalbumin (OVA)-induced allergic airway inflammation to understand the long-term effects of early childhood insults on airway structure and function. We showed that OVA sensitization and challenge in early life led to a 2-fold increase in airway smooth muscle (ASM) innervation (P<0.05) and persistent airway hyperreactivity (AHR). In contrast, OVA exposure in adult life elicited short-term AHR without affecting innervation levels. We found that postnatal ASM innervation required neurotrophin (NT)-4 signaling through the TrkB receptor and that early-life OVA exposure significantly elevated NT4 levels and TrkB signaling by 5- and 2-fold, respectively, to increase innervation. Notably, blockade of NT4/TrkB signaling in OVA-exposed pups prevented both acute and persistent AHR without affecting baseline airway function or inflammation. Furthermore, biophysical assays using lung slices and isolated cells demonstrated that NT4 was necessary for hyperreactivity of ASM induced by early-life OVA exposure. Together, our findings show that the NT4/TrkB-dependent increase in innervation plays a critical role in the alteration of the ASM phenotype during postnatal growth, thereby linking early-life allergen exposure to persistent airway dysfunction.-Aven, L., Paez-Cortez, J., Achey, R., Krishnan, R., Ram-Mohan, S., Cruikshank, W. W., Fine, A., Ai X. An NT4/TrkB-dependent increase in innervation links early-life allergen exposure to persistent airway hyperreactivity.
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ABSTRACT: Neurotrophin family are traditionally recognized for their nerve growth promoting function and are recently identified as crucial factors in regulating neuronal activity in the central and peripheral nervous systems. The family members including nerve growth factor (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) are reported to have distinct roles in the development and maintenance of sensory phenotypes in normal states and in the modulation of sensory activity in disease. This paper highlights receptor tyrosine kinase (Trk) -mediated signal transduction by which neurotrophins regulate neuronal activity in the visceral sensory reflex pathways with emphasis on the distinct roles of NGF and BDNF signaling in physiologic and pathophysiological processes. Viscero-visceral cross-organ sensitization exists widely in human diseases. The role of neurotrophins in mediating neural cross talk and interaction in primary afferent neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) and neurotrophin signal transduction in the context of cross-organ sensitization are also discussed.06/2014; 9(3):216-224. DOI:10.1007/s11515-014-1304-4
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ABSTRACT: Airway smooth muscle (ASM) displays a hyperresponsive phenotype at young age and becomes less responsive in adulthood. We hypothesized that allergic sensitization, which causes ASM hyperresponsiveness and typically occurs early in life, prevents the ontogenetic loss of the ASM hyperresponsive phenotype. We therefore studied whether neonatal allergic sensitization, not followed by later allergen challenges, alters the ontogenesis of ASM properties. We neonatally sensitized guinea pigs to ovalbumin and studied them at 1 week, 3 weeks, and 3 months (adult). A Schultz-Dale response in isolated tracheal rings confirmed sensitization. The occurrence of inflammation was evaluated in the blood and in the submucosa of large airways. We assessed ASM function in tracheal strips as ability to produce force and shortening. ASM content of vimentin was also studied. A Schultz-Dale response was observed in all 3-week or older sensitized animals. A mild inflammatory process was characterized by eosinophilia in the blood and in the airway submucosa. Early life sensitization had no effect on ASM force generation, but prevented the ontogenetic decline of shortening velocity and the increase in resistance to shortening. Vimentin increased with age in control but not in sensitized animals. Allergic sensitization at birth without subsequent allergen exposures is sufficient to prevent normal ASM ontogenesis, inducing persistence to adulthood of an ASM hyperresponsive phenotype.12/2014; 2(12). DOI:10.14814/phy2.12241
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