Wei Gong

Third Military Medical University, Ch’ung-ch’ing-shih, Chongqing Shi, China

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Publications (16)42.11 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Thrombomodulin(TM) serves as a vasoprotective molecule on the surface of vascular endothelial cells (VECs) to maintain the endothelial microenvironment by suppressing cellular proliferation, adhesion and inflammatory responses. Farnesoid X receptor(FXR), a nuclear receptor(NR) and originally considered as a bile acid-activated transcriptional factor, not only regulates metabolism homeostasis, but also influences cholesterol transport, vascular tension, and inflammation. Recent studies have shown that TM expression is upregulated by several NRs. However, it is unknown whether there is a link between FXR and TM. Our studies demonstrated that TM expression and activity were up-regulated by FXR activation in VECs. Reporter assays showed that FXR activation significantly enhanced the transcriptional activity of human TM gene promoter. Elecrophoretic mobility-shift and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays indicated that FXR induced TM expression by binding to a novel FXR-responsive element(FXRE), an inverted repeat DNA motif, IR8(-503 AGGTCCtcccaaagTGCCCT -484) in the promoter region of TM gene. These results suggest that FXR may serve as a novel molecular target for manipulating TM expression and activity in VECs, which may be helpful for designing the therapeutic strategies to the treatment of associated diseases by targeting FXR/TM pathway.
    European journal of pharmacology 09/2013; · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: PURPOSE: The aim of the present study was to evaluate whether the anti-Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) effect of curcumin is associated with the regulation of B cell-activating factor belonging to the TNF family (BAFF) production. METHODS: Collagen-induced arthritis (CIA) was induced in DBA/1 J mice by immunization with bovine type II collagen. To investigate the anti-arthritic effect of curcumin in the CIA model, mice were injected intraperitoneally with curcumin (50 mg/kg) on every other day either from day 1 or from day 28 after the first immunization. The clinical severity of arthritis was monitored. BAFF, interleukin-6 (IL-6) and interferon-γ (IFNγ) production in serum were measured. Furthermore, the effect of curcumin on IFNγ-induced BAFF expression and transcriptional activation in B lymphocytes was determined by qPCR, Western Blot, and luciferase assay. Finally, IFNγ related signal transducers and activators of transcription 1 (STAT1) signaling in B lymphocytes were studied using Western Blot. RESULTS: Curcumin dramatically attenuated the progression and severity of CIA in DBA/1 J mice, accompanied with decrease of BAFF production in serum and spleen cells as well as decrease of serum IFNγ and IL-6. Treatment of B lymphocytes with curcumin suppressed IFNγ-induced BAFF expression, STAT1 phosphorylation and nuclear translocation, suggesting that curcumin may repress IFNγ-induced BAFF expression via negatively interfering with STAT1 signaling. CONCLUSION: The results of the present study suggest that suppression of BAFF production may be a novel mechanism by which curcumin improves RA.
    Journal of Clinical Immunology 11/2012; · 3.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Endothelin-1 (ET-1), predominantly produced by vascular endothelial cells (VECs), plays an important role in the pathogenesis of inflammatory diseases. Liver X receptor (LXR), a typical nuclear receptor, is known for inhibiting expression of inflammatory molecules. However, it remains unclear whether LXR suppresses ET-1 expression. In the present study, we showed that pretreatment with GW3965, a specific ligand of LXR, significantly attenuated lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced ET-1 in mice plasma. The in vitro experiments showed that both LXRα and β were expressed in human VECs, and they are functional as demonstrated by induction of the target gene ABCA1 after treatment with GW3965. Moreover, activation of LXR with GW3965 in human VECs dramatically attenuated the basal and LPS-stimulated ET-1 production at both transcriptional and translational levels. Luciferase reporter assays indicated that LXR activation suppressed the transcriptional activity of the human ET-1 gene promoter, and repressed the activity of a heterologous promoter driven by the response elements of activator-1 (AP-1) or nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB). Electrophoretic mobility shift and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays showed that activation of LXR reduced the binding of the transcriptional factors AP-1 and NF-κB to the ET-1 gene promoter region. In conclusion, activation of LXR represses ET-1 expression in vivo and in vitro, which may be involved in the negatively interfering with AP-1/NF-κB signaling. These results suggest that LXRs may serve as a novel molecular target for modulating ET-1 expression in VECs, and even for the treatment of ET-1-associated inflammatory diseases.
    The international journal of biochemistry & cell biology 09/2012; 44(12):2299-2307. · 4.89 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Octamer-binding transcription factor 4 (Oct4), an important embryonic transcriptional factor, is highly expressed in several tumors and is considered as a hallmark of cancer stem cells. Knowledge about the expression and regulatory mechanisms of Oct4 can contribute to the treatment of cancers. As for cervical cancer, however, details remain obscure about Oct4 expression and its regulatory mechanism. In this study, we found that the level of Oct4 in human papillomavirus 16 (HPV16)- positive cervical cancer cells (CaSki cells) was higher than that in HPV-negative cervical cancer cells (C-33A cells), whereas both the level of histone deacetylase 1 (HDAC1) and DNA methyltransferase 3A (DNMT3A) were lower in CaSki cells than those in C-33A cells. Treatment with valproic acid, an HDAC inhibitor, could significantly increase the expression of Oct4 in C-33A cells, but only slightly increased Oct4 in CaSki cells. Co-immunoprecipitation assays showed that HDAC1 and DNMT3A existed in a common complex. The co-immunoprecipitated DNMT3A or HDAC1 was dose-dependently decreased with valproic acid treatment. These results indicated that HDAC1/DNMT3A-containing complex is associated with the suppression of Oct4 in cervical cancer cells, and the activity of HDAC1 is required in the repression of Oct4.
    Biochemistry (Moscow) 08/2012; 77(8):934-40. · 1.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cytokine inducible SH2-containing protein (CISH), which negatively regulates cytokine signaling by inhibiting JAK2/STAT5 activity, is regarded as a therapeutic target for inflammatory diseases. Farnesoid X receptor (FXR), a ligand-activated transcription factor, has been proposed to play a protective function in the inflammatory responses. However, the role of FXR in modulation of CISH expression is unknown. In the present study, we for the first time identified that in human hepatoma cell line HepG2 the activation of FXR by the natural agonist chenodeoxycholic acid (CDCA) and the synthetic specific agonist GW4064 upregulated CISH at both transcriptional and translational levels, and inhibited interleukin (IL)6-induced STAT5 activation. Moreover, the in vivo experiment demonstrated that gavaging mice with CDCA increased CISH expression and reduced basal STAT5 phosphorylation in liver tissues. Reporter assay showed that FXR agonists enhanced the transcriptional activity of CISH promoter. These data suggest that FXR may serve as a novel molecular target for manipulating CISH expression in hepatocytes. FXR-mediated upregulation of CISH may play an important role in the homeostasis of cytokine signal networks and be beneficial to control cytokine-associated inflammatory diseases.
    Journal of interferon & cytokine research: the official journal of the International Society for Interferon and Cytokine Research 07/2012; · 1.63 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Because of the anti-inflammatory actions of farnesoid X receptor (FXR) agonists, FXR has received much attention as a potential therapeutic target. However, the molecular mechanisms of actions have not yet been elucidated. In the present study, we reported that in the animal model of LPS-induced liver injury, administration of the FXR natural ligand CDCA could attenuate hepatocyte inflammatory damage, reduce transaminase activities, suppress inflammation mediators (IL-6, TNF-α and ICAM-1) expression and inhibit STAT3 phosphorylation. These protective effects of FXR were accompanied by an increased expression of suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (SOCS3), which is a negative feedback regulator of cytokine-STAT3 signaling. We then demonstrated that the beneficial effects of FXR agonist in STAT3 activation were weakened by small interfering RNA-mediated SOCS3 knockdown in hepacytes. Moreover we observed both natural ligand CDCA and synthetic ligand GW4064 could upregulate SOCS 3 expression by enhancing the promoter activity in hepatocytes. These results suggest modulation of SOCS3 expression may represent a novel mechanism through which FXR activation could selectively affect cytokine bioactivity in inflammation response. FXR ligands may be potentially therapeutic in the treatment of liver inflammatory diseases via SOCS3 induction.
    Cellular Signalling 04/2012; 24(8):1658-64. · 4.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The farnesoid X receptor (FXR) is a member of the nuclear receptor superfamily that is highly expressed in liver, kidney, adrenal gland, and intestine. It plays an important role in regulating the progression of several cancers including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). So it is necessary to study the regulation of FXR. In this study, we found that the expression of miR-421 was inversely correlated with FXR protein level in HCC cell lines. Treatment with miR-421 mimic repressed FXR translation. The reporter assay revealed that miR-421 targeted 3' untranslated region of human FXR mRNA. Furthermore, downregulation of FXR by miR-421 promoted the proliferation, migration, and invasion of HCC cells. These results suggest that miR-421 may serve as a novel molecular target for manipulating FXR expression in hepatocyte and for the treatment of HCC.
    Molecular Cancer Research 03/2012; 10(4):516-22. · 4.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The farnesoid X receptor (FXR), a member of the nuclear receptor superfamily, has been proposed to play an important role in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular diseases by regulating the metabolism and transport of cholesterol and triglyceride. Scavenger receptor class B type I (SR-BI), a high-density lipoprotein receptor, plays an important role in decreasing lipid metabolism-associated cardiovascular diseases by regulating reverse cholesterol transport. Recent studies have shown that SR-BI expression is upregulated by several nuclear receptors. However, the role of FXR in the regulation of SR-BI expression is not well known. In the present study, we investigate the regulation of SR-BI by FXR in hepatocyte and the corresponding mechanism. Treatment of human hepatoma cell line HepG2 with FXR ligands resulted in upregulation of SR-BI at the levels of both mRNA and protein. Reporter assays showed that activation of FXR significantly enhanced the SR-BI promoter activity. Electrophoretic mobility shift and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays indicated that FXR induced SR-BI expression by binding to a novel FXR element (FXRE), a directed repeat DNA motif, DR8 (-703 AGGCCAcgttctagAGCTCA -684). The in vivo experiment demonstrated that gavaging mice with a natural ligand of FXR increased SR-BI expression in liver tissues. FXR can directly upregulate SR-BI expression in hepatocyte, and DR8 is a likely novel FXRE that is involved in SR-BI regulation. FXR may serve as a novel molecular target for manipulating SR-BI expression in hepatocyte.
    Atherosclerosis 10/2010; 213(2):443-8. · 3.71 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Overexpression of B lymphocyte stimulator (BLyS) is closely involved in the pathogenesis and progression of some autoimmune diseases. Curcumin, a pharmacologically safe agent, has been shown to possess potent anti-inflammatory properties. However, it is not clear whether curcumin affects the expression of BLyS. In this study, we report that curcumin inhibits the expression of BLyS and that a DNA-binding site for the transcriptional factor NF-κB in the BLyS promoter region is required for this regulation. Moreover, we find that curcumin reduces the DNA-binding activity of NF-κB to the BLyS promoter region and suppresses nuclear translocation of p65, suggesting that curcumin may suppress BLyS expression via negatively interfering with NF-κB signaling. These results suggest that curcumin may serve as a novel therapeutic agent in the treatment of autoimmune diseases by targeting BLyS.
    European journal of pharmacology 10/2010; 650(1):451-7. · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: High mobility group box chromosomal protein 1 (HMGB1) is a lethal mediator of systemic inflammation, and its A box domain is isolated as an antagonist of HMGB1. To enhance its expression level and its anti-HMGB1 effect, the A box cDNA was coupled with the sequence encoding lectin-like domain of thrombomodulin (TMD1). The fusion DNA fragment was ligated into the prokaryotic expression vector pQE-80L to construct the recombinant plasmid pQE80L-A/TMD1. The plasmid was then transformed into Escherichia coli DH5alpha, and the recombinant fusion protein A/TMD1 was expressed at 37 degrees C for 4 h, with induction by IPTG at the final concentration of 0.2 mM. The expression level of the fusion protein was up to 40% of the total cellular protein. The fusion protein was purified by Ni-NTA chromatography and the purity was about 95%. After passing over a polymyxin B column to remove any contaminating lipopolysaccharides, the purified protein was tested for its anti-inflammatory activity. Our data show that A/TMD1 significantly inhibits HMGB1-induced TNF-alpha release and might be useful in treating HMGB1-elevated sepsis.
    Biochemistry (Moscow) 04/2010; 75(4):466-71. · 1.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: HMGB1, composed of the A box, B box, and C tail domains, is a critical proinflammatory cytokine involved in diverse inflammatory diseases. The B box mediates proinflammatory activity, while the A box alone acts as a specific antagonist of HMGB1. The C tail contributes to the spatial structure of A box and regulates HMGB1 DNA binding specificity. It is unknown whether the C tail can enhance the anti-inflammatory effect of A box. In this study, we generated fusion proteins consisting of the A box and C tail, in which the B box was deleted and the A box and C tail were linked either directly or by the flexible linker sequence (Gly4Ser)3. In vitro and in vivo experiments showed that the two fusion proteins had a higher anti-inflammatory activity compared to the A box alone. This suggests that the fused C tail enhances the anti-inflammatory effect of the A box.
    BioMed Research International 01/2010; 2010:915234. · 2.71 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Soluble APRIL (sAPRIL), the active form of a proliferation-inducing ligand (APRIL), is implicated in the proliferation of tumor cells. Suppressing APRIL function has been considered as a potential strategy for the therapy of APRIL-associated tumors. In the present study, we generated human sAPRIL and its two mutants, Gln187-D-sAPRIL (Gln187 deleted) and Gly187-sAPRIL (Gln187 replaced by Gly). In vitro experiments showed that the two mutants had similar specific binding capacity to lung carcinoma A549 cells compared to the wild-type sAPRIL, and both, especially Gly187-sAPRIL, exhibited significant antagonistic effect on sAPRIL-induced tumor cell proliferation in a dose-dependent manner, which might be predominantly mediated by blocking sAPRIL-induced MEK and ERK phosphorylation but not p38MAPK or JNK signaling. In vivo experiments with nude mice bearing A549 cell-derived xenograft tumor showed that only the Gly187-sAPRIL mutant could significantly suppress the tumor growth. These results suggest that Gln187 may be a crucial amino acid in APRIL-mediated tumor cell proliferation via the MEK-ERK signaling pathway and that the sAPRIL mutants may serve as novel potential antagonists of APRIL for the therapy of APRIL-associated cancers.
    Acta biochimica Polonica 12/2009; 56(4):703-10. · 1.19 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Antibacterial activity is a novel function of high-mobility group box 1 (HMGB1). However, the functional site for this new effect is presently unknown. In this study, recombinant human HMGB1 A box and B box (rHMGB1 A box, rHMGB1 B box), recombinant human HMGB1 (rHMGB1) and the truncated C-terminal acidic tail mutant (tHMGB1) were prepared by the prokaryotic expression system. The C-terminal acidic tail (C peptide) was synthesized, which was composed of 30 amino acid residues. Antibacterial assays showed that both the full length rHMGB1 and the synthetic C peptide alone could efficiently inhibit bacteria proliferation, but rHMGB1 A box and B box, and tHMGB1 lacking the C-terminal acidic tail had no antibacterial function. These results suggest that C-terminal acidic tail is the key region for the antibacterial activity of HMGB1. Furthermore, we prepared eleven different deleted mutants lacking several amino acid residues in C-terminal acidic tail of HMGB1. Antibacterial assays of these mutants demonstrate that the amino acid residues 201-205 in C-terminal acidic tail region is the core functional site for the antibacterial activity of the molecule. In sum, these results define the key region and the crucial site in HMGB1 for its antibacterial function, which is helpful to illustrating the antibacterial mechanisms of HMGB1.
    Journal of Biomedical Science 09/2009; 16:83. · 2.46 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate the effect of FXR on scavenger receptor class B type I (SR-BI) expression. Human vascular endothelium Eahy926 cells were treated with FXR agonist androsterone, and the specific target gene of FXR SHP mRNA was detected by RT-PCR. SR-BI mRNA and protein were determined using RT-PCR, real-time PCR and Western blotting. The level of SHP mRNA in Eahy926 cells increased after androsterone treatment at different concentrations for 24 h, demonstrating FXR activation in the cells. RT-PCR, real-time PCR and Western blotting detected increased SR-BI expression at both mRNA and protein levels after FXR activation. CONLUSION: FXR increases the expression of SR-BI in human vascular endothelium cells.
    Nan fang yi ke da xue xue bao = Journal of Southern Medical University 08/2009; 29(7):1344-7.
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    ABSTRACT: Decorin is a member of the family of small leucine-rich proteoglycans that are present in blood vessels and synthesized by vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs). Decorin plays complex roles in both normal vascular physiology and the pathogenesis of various types of vascular disorders. However, the mechanisms of regulation of decorin expression in vasculature are not clearly understood. Particularly little information is available about a role of nuclear receptors in the regulation of decorin expression. In the present study, we report that activation of vascular FXR by a specific ligand resulted in upregulation of decorin at the levels of both mRNA and protein. FXR appears to induce decorin expression at a transcriptional level because (1) upregulation of decorin mRNA expression was abolished by the treatment of a transcription inhibitor, actinomycin D; and (2) decorin promoter activity was significantly increased by activation of FXR. Functional analysis of human decorin promoter identified an imperfect inverted repeat DNA motif, IR8 (-2313TGGTCAtagtgtcaTGACCT-2294), as a likely FXR-responsive element that is involved in decorin regulation.
    Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 09/2008; 372(4):746-51. · 2.28 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: B cell activating factor belonging to the TNF family (BAFF) is a novel member of the tumor necrosis factor (TNF) ligand family and plays an important role in B lymphocyte maturation and survival. Overexpression of BAFF is closely involved in the pathogenesis and progression of many kinds of autoimmune disorders; therefore, BAFF has been considered as an ideal therapeutic target for these conditions. In this study, we generated several candidate immune inhibitors of human BAFF by conjugating foreign immunodominant T-helper cell (Th) epitopes to the N- or C-terminus of five BAFF mutants. The recombined proteins were successfully expressed in Escherichia coli (E. coli) and purified by Ni-NTA chromatography. BALB/c mice immunized with the recombinant proteins produced high levels of anti-BAFF antibodies, and their sera inhibited the lymphocyte proliferation-inducing activity of recombinant soluble BAFF and natural soluble BAFF. Moreover, antibodies cross-reactive with BAFF were detected in sera from hu-SCID mice immunized with the recombinant proteins. These results indicated that the recombinant BAFF mutants modified with Th epitopes could induce neutralizing antibodies against BAFF in vivo. This study may provide a valuable strategy for treating BAFF-associated autoimmune diseases.
    FEBS Letters 03/2007; 581(4):581-6. · 3.58 Impact Factor