Bacterial Lipopolysaccharide Enhances PDGF Signaling and Pulmonary Fibrosis in Rats Exposed to Carbon Nanotubes

Department of Environmental and Molecular Toxicology, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, 27695-7633, USA.
American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology (Impact Factor: 3.99). 10/2009; 43(2):142-51. DOI: 10.1165/rcmb.2009-0113OC
Source: PubMed


Engineered multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT) represent a possible health risk for pulmonary fibrosis due to their fiber-like shape and potential for persistence in the lung. We postulated that bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS), a ubiquitous agent in the environment that causes lung inflammation, would enhance fibrosis caused by MWCNT. Rats were exposed to LPS and then intratracheally instilled with MWCNT or carbon black (CB) nanoparticles 24 hours later. Pulmonary fibrosis was observed 21 days after MWCNT exposure, but not with CB. LPS alone caused no fibrosis but enhanced MWCNT-induced fibrosis. LPS plus CB did not significantly increase fibrosis. MWCNT increased platelet-derived growth factor-AA (PDGF-AA), a major mediator of fibrosis. PDGF-AA production in response to MWCNT, but not CB, was synergistically enhanced by LPS. Immunostaining showed PDGF-AA in bronchiolar epithelial cells and macrophages. Since macrophages engulfed MWCNT, were positive for PDGF-AA, and mediate fibroblast responses, experiments were performed with rat lung macrophages (NR8383 cells) and rat lung fibroblasts in vitro. LPS exposure increased PDGF-A mRNA levels in NR8383 cells and enhanced MWCNT-induced PDGF-A mRNA levels. Moreover, LPS increased MWCNT- or CB-induced PDGF receptor-alpha (PDGF-Ralpha) mRNA in fibroblasts. Our data suggest that LPS exacerbates MWCNT-induced lung fibrosis by amplifying production of PDGF-AA in macrophages and epithelial cells, and by increasing PDGF-Ralpha on pulmonary fibroblasts. Our findings also suggest that individuals with pre-existing pulmonary inflammation are at greater risk for the potential adverse effects of MWCNT.

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Available from: James C Bonner, Oct 05, 2015
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    • "The majority of MWCNTs delivered to the lungs of mice by inhalation are engulfed by lung macrophages, which migrate to the distal alveolar regions of the lung and also translocate to the subpleural regions at the lung periphery to mediate subpleural fibrosis and inflammation [15]. MWCNTs can persist in the lungs of rodents for months after exposure to cause progressive inflammation and fibrosis [16], [17], [18]. This is likely due to impaired macrophage clearance of MWCNTs from the lung. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) pose a possible human health risk for lung disease as a result of inhalation exposure. Mice exposed to MWCNTs develop pulmonary fibrosis. Lung macrophages engulf MWCNTs and produce pro-fibrogenic cytokines including interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-6, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, and osteopontin (OPN). Atomic layer deposition (ALD) is a novel process used to enhance functional properties of MWCNTs, yet the consequence of ALD-modified MWCNTs on macrophage biology and fibrosis is unknown. Methods The purpose of this study was to determine whether ALD coating with aluminum oxide (Al2O3) would alter the fibrogenic response to MWCNTs and whether cytokine expression in human macrophage/monocytes exposed to MWCNTs in vitro would predict the severity of lung fibrosis in mice. Uncoated (U)-MWCNTs or ALD-coated (A)-MWCNTs were incubated with THP-1 macrophages or human peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) and cell supernatants assayed for cytokines by ELISA. C57BL6 mice were exposed to a single dose of A- or U-MWCNTs by oropharyngeal aspiration (4 mg/kg) followed by evaluation of histopathology, lung inflammatory cell counts, and cytokine levels at day 1 and 28 post-exposure. Results ALD coating of MWCNTs with Al2O3 enhanced IL-1β secretion by THP-1 and PBMC in vitro, yet reduced protein levels of IL-6, TNF-α, and OPN production by THP-1 cells. Moreover, Al2O3 nanoparticles, but not carbon black NPs, increased IL-1β but decreased OPN and IL-6 in THP-1 and PBMC. Mice exposed to U-MWCNT had increased levels of all four cytokines assayed and developed pulmonary fibrosis by 28 days, whereas ALD-coating significantly reduced fibrosis and cytokine levels at the mRNA or protein level. Conclusion These findings indicate that ALD thin film coating of MWCNTs with Al2O3 reduces fibrosis in mice and that in vitro phagocyte expression of IL-6, TNF-α, and OPN, but not IL-1β, predict MWCNT-induced fibrosis in the lungs of mice in vivo.
    PLoS ONE 09/2014; 9(9):e106870. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0106870 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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    • "The scores from all three observers were averaged and the data was presented as the mean value ± SEM of the inflammation score of 5–7 animals for each dose group. The scoring system for acute inflammation at 1 day and parenchymal fibrosis/alveolitis at 21 days used in this study is an unbiased method that we have employed previously [59] and is derived from a simple unbiased method of estimating pulmonary fibrosis on a numerical scale [60]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Nickel nanoparticles (NiNPs) are increasingly used in a variety of industrial applications, including the manufacturing of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs). While occupational nickel exposure is a known cause of pulmonary alveolitis, fibrosis, and cancer, the health risks of NiNPs are not well understood, especially in susceptible individuals such as asthmatics. The T-box transcription factor Tbx21 (T-bet) maintains Th1 cell development and loss of T-bet is associated with a shift towards Th2 type allergic airway inflammation that characterizes asthma. The purpose of this study was to determine the role of T-bet in susceptibility to lung remodeling by NiNPs or MWCNTs. Wild-type (WT) and T-bet-/- mice were exposed to NiNPs or MWCNTs (4 mg/kg) by oropharyngeal aspiration (OPA). Necropsy was performed at 1 and 21 days. Bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) was collected for differential counting of inflammatory cells and for measurement of cytokines by ELISA. The left lung was collected for histopathology. The right lung was analyzed for cytokine or mucin (MUC5AC and MUC5B) mRNAs. Morphometry of alcian-blue/periodic acid Schiff (AB/PAS)-stained lung tissue showed that NiNPs, significantly increased mucous cell metaplasia in T-bet-/- mice at 21 days (p < 0.001) compared to WT mice, and increased MUC5AC and MUC5B mRNAs (p < 0.05). MWCNTs also increased mucous cell metaplasia in T-bet-/- mice, but to a lesser extent than NiNPs. Chronic alveolitis was also increased by NiNPs, but not MWCNTs, in T-bet-/- mice compared to WT mice at 21 days (P < 0.001). NiNPs also increased IL-13 and eosinophils (p < 0.001) in BALF from T-bet-/- mice after 1 day. Interestingly, the chemokine CCL2 in the BALF of T-bet-/- mice was increased at 1 and 21 days (p < 0.001 and p < 0.05, respectively) by NiNPs, and to a lesser extent by MWCNTs at 1 day. Treatment of T-bet-/- mice with a monoclonal anti-CCL2 antibody enhanced NiNP-induced mucous cell metaplasia and MUC5AC mRNA levels (p < 0.05), yet marginally reduced NiNP-induced alveolitis. These findings identify T-bet as a potentially important susceptibility factor for NiNP exposure and to a lesser extent for MWCNT exposure, and suggests that individuals with asthma are at greater risk.
    Particle and Fibre Toxicology 02/2014; 11(1):7. DOI:10.1186/1743-8977-11-7 · 7.11 Impact Factor
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    • "It is generally accepted that LPS-induced pulmonary fibrosis involves the proliferation and differentiation of lung fibroblasts [17,18]. PTEN, a tumor suppressor, is involved in the proliferation of various cells [19-23]; a decrease in PTEN expression results in the activation of the PI3-K-Akt signaling pathway [24]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Abnormal and uncontrolled proliferation of lung fibroblasts may contribute to pulmonary fibrosis. Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) can induce fibroblast proliferation and differentiation through activation of phosphoinositide3-Kinase (PI3-K) pathway. However, the detail mechanism by which LPS contributes to the development of lung fibrosis is not clearly understood. To investigate the role of phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN), a PI3-K pathway suppressor, on LPS-induced lung fibroblast proliferation, differentiation, collagen secretion and activation of PI3-K, we transfected PTEN overexpression lentivirus into cultured mouse lung fibroblasts with or without LPS treatment to evaluate proliferation by MTT and Flow cytometry assays. Expression of PTEN, alpha-smooth muscle actin (alpha-SMA), glycogen synthase kinase 3 beta (GSK3beta) and phosphorylation of Akt were determined by Western-blot or real-time RT-PCR assays. The PTEN phosphorylation activity was measured by a malachite green-based assay. The content of C-terminal propeptide of type I procollagen (PICP) in cell culture supernatants was examined by ELISA. We found that overexpression of PTEN effectively increased expression and phosphatase activity of PTEN, and concomitantly inhibited LPS-induced fibroblast proliferation, differentiation and collagen secretion. Phosphorylation of Akt and GSK3beta protein expression levels in the LPS-induced PTEN overexpression transfected cells were significantly lower than those in the LPS-induced non-transfected cells, which can be reversed by the PTEN inhibitor, bpV(phen). Collectively, our results show that overexpression and induced phosphatase activity of PTEN inhibits LPS-induced lung fibroblast proliferation, differentiation and collagen secretion through inactivation of PI3-K-Akt-GSK3beta signaling pathways, which can be abrogated by a selective PTEN inhibitor. Thus, expression and phosphatase activity of PTEN could be a potential therapeutic target for LPS-induced pulmonary fibrosis. Compared with PTEN expression level, phosphatase activity of PTEN is more crucial in affecting lung fibroblast proliferation, differentiation and collagen secretion.
    Cell and Bioscience 01/2014; 4(1):2. DOI:10.1186/2045-3701-4-2 · 3.63 Impact Factor
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