Although short-acting and long-acting inhaled β(2)-adrenergic receptor agonists (SABA and LABA, respectively) relieve asthma symptoms, use of either agent alone without concomitant anti-inflammatory drugs (corticosteroids) may increase the risk of disease exacerbation in some patients. We found previously that pretreatment of human precision-cut lung slices (PCLS) with SABA impaired subsequent β(2)-agonist-induced bronchodilation, which occurred independently of changes in receptor quantities. Here we provide evidence that prolonged exposure of cultured human airway smooth muscle (HuASM) cells to β(2)-agonists directly augments procontractile signaling pathways elicited by several compounds including thrombin, bradykinin, and histamine. Such treatment did not increase surface receptor amounts or expression of G proteins and downstream effectors (phospholipase Cβ and myosin light chain). In contrast, β-agonists decreased expression of regulator of G protein signaling 5 (RGS5), which is an inhibitor of G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) activity. RGS5 knockdown in HuASM increased agonist-evoked intracellular calcium flux and myosin light chain (MLC) phosphorylation, which are prerequisites for contraction. PCLS from Rgs5(-/-) mice contracted more to carbachol than those from WT mice, indicating that RGS5 negatively regulates bronchial smooth muscle contraction. Repetitive β(2)-agonist use may not only lead to reduced bronchoprotection but also to sensitization of excitation-contraction signaling pathways as a result of reduced RGS5 expression.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Short-acting β2-agonists (SABAs) and long-acting β2-agonists (LABAs) are both important for treatment of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) because of their bronchodilator and bronchoprotective effects. However, the use of these agonists, at least for asthma, has generated some controversy because of their association with increased mortality. Pharmacogenetics is the study of genetically determined variation in response to medications, which might prove useful for target therapies in highly responsive patients, especially for more expensive therapies or those with increased risk of side effects. Variation in response to both SABAs and LABAs has been observed in patients with polymorphisms in the β2 adrenoceptor gene (ADRB2). This review summarizes results from various studies on the possible relationship between ADRB2 polymorphisms and the bronchodilator or bronchoprotective effects of inhaled β2-agonists. By assessing the ADRB2 genotype, the hope is that it will be possible to predict the responsiveness to chronic administration of β2-agonists. Genetic testing, however, is of limited usefulness at this stage for ADRB2 because the common variants identified thus far account for only a small proportion of the variation observed for given responses. Carefully performed and adequately powered clinical trials continue to be important for achieving the goal of pharmacogenetic approaches to therapy.
Allergology International 06/2011; 60(3):239-46. DOI:10.2332/allergolint.11-RAI-0317 · 2.46 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, activation of G(q)-protein-coupled receptors causes bronchoconstriction. In each case, the management of moderate-to-severe disease uses inhaled corticosteroid (glucocorticoid)/long-acting β(2)-adrenoceptor agonist (LABA) combination therapies, which are more efficacious than either monotherapy alone. In primary human airway smooth muscle cells, glucocorticoid/LABA combinations synergistically induce the expression of regulator of G-protein signaling 2 (RGS2), a GTPase-activating protein that attenuates G(q) signaling. Functionally, RGS2 reduced intracellular free calcium flux elicited by histamine, methacholine, leukotrienes, and other spasmogens. Furthermore, protection against spasmogen-increased intracellular free calcium, following treatment for 6 h with LABA plus corticosteroid, was dependent on RGS2. Finally, Rgs2-deficient mice revealed enhanced bronchoconstriction to spasmogens and an absence of LABA-induced bronchoprotection. These data identify RGS2 gene expression as a genomic mechanism of bronchoprotection that is induced by glucocorticoids plus LABAs in human airway smooth muscle and provide a rational explanation for the clinical efficacy of inhaled corticosteroid (glucocorticoid)/LABA combinations in obstructive airways diseases.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 11/2011; 108(49):19713-8. DOI:10.1073/pnas.1110226108 · 9.67 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Severe asthma is associated with fixed airway obstruction attributable to inflammation, copious luminal mucus, and increased airway smooth muscle (ASM) mass. Paradoxically, studies demonstrated that the hypertrophic and hyperplastic ASM characteristic of severe asthma has reduced contractile capacity. We compared the G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR)-induced Ca(2+) mobilization and expression of GPCRs and signaling proteins related to procontractile signaling in ASM derived postmortem from subjects who died of nonrespiratory causes, with cells from subjects who died of asthma. Despite the increased or comparable expression of contraction-promoting GPCRs (bradykinin B2 or histamine H1 and protease-activated receptor 1, respectively) in asthmatic ASM cells relative to cells from healthy donors, asthmatic ASM cells exhibited reduced histamine-induced Ca(2+) mobilization and comparable responses to bradykinin and thrombin, suggesting a postreceptor signaling defect. Accordingly, the expression of regulator of G-protein signaling-5 (RGS5), an inhibitor of ASM contraction, was increased in cultured, asthmatic ASM cells and in bronchial smooth muscle bundles of both human subjects with asthma and allergen-challenged mice, relative to those of healthy human subjects or naive mice. The overexpression of RGS5 impaired the release of Ca(2+) to thrombin, histamine, and carbachol, and reduced the contraction of precision-cut lung slices to carbachol. These results suggest that increased RGS5 expression contributes to decreased myocyte shortening in severe and fatal asthma.
American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology 01/2012; 46(6):823-32. DOI:10.1165/rcmb.2011-0110OC · 3.99 Impact Factor
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