Pancreatic regeneration in chronic pancreatitis requires activation of the notch signaling pathway.
ABSTRACT Chronic pancreatitis as an inflammatory process characterized by morphological changes, pancreatic dysfunction, and pain. During pancreatic injury and repair the Notch signaling pathway is reinstated. The current study analyzed this pathway in chronic pancreatitis and characterized its influence on fibrogenesis. Real-time quantitative PCR and immunohistochemistry were used for expression studies. Notch activation was determined by a specific luciferase-HES-1-reporter gene constructs. Cells were stimulated with alcohol, glucose, bile acids, and steroids. Notch-2, -3, and -4 mRNA, were overexpressed in chronic pancreatitis specimens. The ligands Jagged-1, -2, and Delta-1 were highly overexpressed. Jagged-1 and Notch receptors were observed in nerves, regenerating exocrine cells, and endocrine cells. Delta staining was present in ductal but not in acinus cells and not in nerves. Activation of Notch signaling was detectable upon cell stimulation with glucose, steroids, and bile acids. High glucose levels were further associated with increased collagen-I production. The Notch pathway is reactivated during chronic pancreatitis. Among the stimuli activating the Notch pathway are steroids, high glucose levels, and bile acids. These findings suggest a possible role of the Notch pathway during pancreatic regeneration since Jagged-1 inhibits inducible collagen-1 production, suggesting a new mechanism of tissue repair in this disease.
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ABSTRACT: Changes in substance P content and a relationship between the degree of perineural inflammation and pain has been demonstrated in chronic pancreatitis. Whether a relationship exists between neural alteration and pancreatic inflammation (neurogenic inflammation) is not known. In the present study we evaluated gene expression of preprotachykinin A (PPT-A), the gene encoding substance P, and interleukin 8, a proinflammatory and hyperalgesic mediator whose release is co-regulated by substance P. Pancreatic tissue specimens obtained from 21 patients (16 male, five female) with chronic pancreatitis and 18 healthy organ donors (nine male, nine female) were analysed. Gene expression of PPT-A and interleukin 8 was studied by northern blot analysis. Respective proteins were localised using immunohistochemistry. Northern blot analysis showed that PTT-A mRNA expression levels were present at comparable levels in normal and chronic pancreatitis tissue samples. In contrast, interleukin 8 mRNA was expressed at very low levels in normal controls but was increased 41-fold (p<0. 001) in chronic pancreatitis tissue samples. Using immunohistochemistry, interleukin 8 protein was localised mainly in immune cells often found around enlarged pancreatic nerves. In addition, in chronic pancreatitis, intense interleukin 8 immunostaining was present in metaplastic ductal cells of the atrophic pancreatic parenchyma. In chronic pancreatitis samples there was a positive relationship between interleukin 8 mRNA levels and the presence of ductal metaplasia (r=0.795; p<0.001) and the inflammation score (r=0.713; p<0.001). Our data indicate that in chronic pancreatitis, the increase in substance P in enlarged pancreatic nerves is not caused by enhanced intrapancreatic PTT-A mRNA expression, suggesting that the location of substance P synthesis is outside of the pancreas. In addition, localisation of interleukin 8 positive immune cells around pancreatic nerves further supports the existence of neuroimmune interactions as a pathophysiological mechanism in chronic pancreatitis.Gut 09/2000; 47(3):423-8. · 10.73 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The immunologic mechanisms involved in the development of chronic pancreatitis (CP) are poorly understood. Chronically inflamed tissues contain increased numbers of mononuclear cells expressing the CC chemokine receptor 5 (CCR5), which is also a coreceptor for HIV entry of macrophagetropic strains. However, whether this receptor is involved in the inflammatory process in CP is not known. In the current study, we analyzed the expression of CCR5 in CP. The detection of chemokine receptors on inflammatory cells would strongly suggest their involvement in the pathogenesis of CP (i.e., attraction and activation of these cells). To further evaluate this, we consecutively analyzed the expression of 2 ligands of CCR5: RANTES and MIP-alpha. Pancreatic tissue samples of 22 patients with CP and of 7 healthy pancreas were evaluated. CCR5, RANTES, and MIP-1alpha were analyzed by Northern blot analysis. Consecutive tissue sections were stained for CCR5, CD3, and CD68 to define the leukocyte subtype expressing CCR5 in CP. By Northern blot analysis, CCR5, RANTES, and MIP-1alpha messenger RNA (mRNA) levels were 12.9-fold, 13.3-fold and 9.2-fold higher in CP specimens compared with healthy controls, respectively (P<.01). Immunostaining for CCR5 revealed a 30-fold increase of CCR5-positive cells in CP tissue compared with the healthy pancreas. Staining of consecutive tissue sections revealed that the majority of CCR5-positive cells were also CD68-positive (macrophages). Our data indicate that a remarkable portion of CCR5-positive cells in CP are macrophages. CCR5 is most likely involved in the attraction and activation of these macrophages, since the CCR5 ligands RANTES and MIP-1alpha are concomitantly upregulated.Surgery 12/2000; 128(5):806-14. · 3.37 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: To analyze the potential role of the Notch signaling pathway in pancreatic cancer angiogenesis and invasion. Angiogenesis, pain, and early neuroinvasion are clinical features of pancreatic cancer. Blood vessels and nerves develop together and use common routes through the organism. The Notch pathway (Notch-1/4, Jagged-1/2, Delta-1) appears crucial in this process. The current study analyzed the Notch pathway in pancreatic cancer and characterized its angiogenic and invasive effects. Five PaCa cell lines were cultured for the in vitro experiments. Real-time quantitative RT-PCR was done to quantify mRNA expression in 31 human PaCa specimens, and immunohistochemistry was used to localize protein expression within tumor specimens. Activation of the Notch signaling was done by transfection of PaCa cells with a constitutive active Notch-1 mutant (Notch-IC). Overexpression of Jagged and Delta was achieved by transfection of full-length cDNA. Spheroid assays were used to study angiogenesis and ELISAs to measure VEGF, bFGF, and angiogenin expression. Matrigel invasion assays were used to analyze tumor cell invasion. Notch-3 and Notch-4 mRNA were significantly (P < 0.001) overexpressed in PaCa. Immunohistochemistry revealed protein accumulation of Notch-1 as well. All ligands were significantly up-regulated. A positive immunosignal of ligands was seen in nerves, blood vessels, and ductal tumor cells. Transfection of PaCa cells with the constitutive active Notch-IC mutant and with Jagged-1 revealed increased levels for VEGF. Concomitantly, recombinant Jagged-1 increased sprouting of endothelial cells in the spheroid assay. The Notch pathway most likely regulates neurovascular development in pancreatic cancer. Activation of this signaling pathway by constitutive Notch-1 mutants and by Jagged-1 causes an angiogenic and invasive tumor phenotype. Specific blockade of Notch signaling may therefore be beneficial for patients with pancreatic cancer.Annals of Surgery 12/2005; 242(6):791-800, discussion 800-1. · 6.33 Impact Factor