Silicosis is a complex lung disease for which no successful treatment is available and therefore lung transplantation is a potential alternative. Tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFalpha) plays a central role in the pathogenesis of silicosis. TNFalpha signaling is mediated by the transcription factor, Nuclear Factor (NF)-kappaB, which regulates genes controlling several physiological processes including the innate immune responses, cell death, and inflammation. Therefore, inhibition of NF-kappaB activation represents a potential therapeutic strategy for silicosis. METHODS/FINDINGS: In the present work we evaluated the lung transplant database (May 1986-July 2007) at the University of Pittsburgh to study the efficacy of lung transplantation in patients with silicosis (n = 11). We contrasted the overall survival and rate of graft rejection in these patients to that of patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF, n = 79) that was selected as a control group because survival benefit of lung transplantation has been identified for these patients. At the time of lung transplantation, we found the lungs of silica-exposed subjects to contain multiple foci of inflammatory cells and silicotic nodules with proximal TNFalpha expressing macrophage and NF-kappaB activation in epithelial cells. Patients with silicosis had poor survival (median survival 2.4 yr; confidence interval (CI): 0.16-7.88 yr) compared to IPF patients (5.3 yr; CI: 2.8-15 yr; p = 0.07), and experienced early rejection of their lung grafts (0.9 yr; CI: 0.22-0.9 yr) following lung transplantation (2.4 yr; CI:1.5-3.6 yr; p<0.05). Using a mouse experimental model in which the endotracheal instillation of silica reproduces the silica-induced lung injury observed in humans we found that systemic inhibition of NF-kappaB activation with a pharmacologic inhibitor (BAY 11-7085) of IkappaB alpha phosphorylation decreased silica-induced inflammation and collagen deposition. In contrast, transgenic mice expressing a dominant negative IkappaB alpha mutant protein under the control of epithelial cell specific promoters demonstrate enhanced apoptosis and collagen deposition in their lungs in response to silica. CONCLUSIONS: Although limited by its size, our data support that patients with silicosis appear to have poor outcome following lung transplantation. Experimental data indicate that while the systemic inhibition of NF-kappaB protects from silica-induced lung injury, epithelial cell specific NF-kappaB inhibition appears to aggravate the outcome of experimental silicosis.

DI GIUSEPPE, M., Gambelli, F., HOYLE W., G., Lungarella, G., STUDER S., M., Richarfs, T., et al. (2009). Systemic inhibition of NF-kappaB activation protects from silicosis. PLOS ONE, 4(5), e5689.

Systemic inhibition of NF-kappaB activation protects from silicosis.

LUNGARELLA, GIUSEPPE;
2009

Abstract

Silicosis is a complex lung disease for which no successful treatment is available and therefore lung transplantation is a potential alternative. Tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFalpha) plays a central role in the pathogenesis of silicosis. TNFalpha signaling is mediated by the transcription factor, Nuclear Factor (NF)-kappaB, which regulates genes controlling several physiological processes including the innate immune responses, cell death, and inflammation. Therefore, inhibition of NF-kappaB activation represents a potential therapeutic strategy for silicosis. METHODS/FINDINGS: In the present work we evaluated the lung transplant database (May 1986-July 2007) at the University of Pittsburgh to study the efficacy of lung transplantation in patients with silicosis (n = 11). We contrasted the overall survival and rate of graft rejection in these patients to that of patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF, n = 79) that was selected as a control group because survival benefit of lung transplantation has been identified for these patients. At the time of lung transplantation, we found the lungs of silica-exposed subjects to contain multiple foci of inflammatory cells and silicotic nodules with proximal TNFalpha expressing macrophage and NF-kappaB activation in epithelial cells. Patients with silicosis had poor survival (median survival 2.4 yr; confidence interval (CI): 0.16-7.88 yr) compared to IPF patients (5.3 yr; CI: 2.8-15 yr; p = 0.07), and experienced early rejection of their lung grafts (0.9 yr; CI: 0.22-0.9 yr) following lung transplantation (2.4 yr; CI:1.5-3.6 yr; p<0.05). Using a mouse experimental model in which the endotracheal instillation of silica reproduces the silica-induced lung injury observed in humans we found that systemic inhibition of NF-kappaB activation with a pharmacologic inhibitor (BAY 11-7085) of IkappaB alpha phosphorylation decreased silica-induced inflammation and collagen deposition. In contrast, transgenic mice expressing a dominant negative IkappaB alpha mutant protein under the control of epithelial cell specific promoters demonstrate enhanced apoptosis and collagen deposition in their lungs in response to silica. CONCLUSIONS: Although limited by its size, our data support that patients with silicosis appear to have poor outcome following lung transplantation. Experimental data indicate that while the systemic inhibition of NF-kappaB protects from silica-induced lung injury, epithelial cell specific NF-kappaB inhibition appears to aggravate the outcome of experimental silicosis.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11365/6921
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