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J Invest Dermatol. 2007 Jan;127(1):98-105. Epub 2006 Oct 5.

Functional implications of the IL-6 signaling pathway in keloid pathogenesis.

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  • 1Department of Molecular Pathology, Institute of Gerontology, Nippon Medical School, Kawasaki, Japan. ciem@nms.ac.jp

Abstract

The molecular mechanism(s) behind keloid pathogenesis remains unclear. Previously by global gene expression analysis of keloid fibroblasts (KFs), we implicated the IL-6 signaling pathway in keloid pathogenesis. Here, we determine a functional role of IL-6 signaling in keloid scars. Primary cultures of KFs and surrounding nonlesional fibroblasts (NFs) were subjected to induction or inhibition of IL-6 or its specific receptor IL-6 receptor alpha (IL-6R alpha) and detection of their effects on extracellular matrix gene expression. The levels of gp130 and several downstream targets in IL-6 signaling were also examined. IL-6 secretion was significantly higher in KFs than NFs. Addition of IL-6 peptide to NFs culture or inhibition of IL-6 or its receptor IL-6R alpha by their corresponding antibodies in KFs culture revealed a dose-dependent increase or decrease in collagen type I alpha 2 and fibronectin 1 mRNAs, respectively. Induction of IL-6 by IL-1beta peptide and stimulation by IL-6 peptide in NFs, or inhibition of IL-6 or IL-6R alpha in KFs cultures demonstrated a dose-dependent increase or decrease in procollagen I synthesis, respectively. The mRNA and protein expressions of gp130 and several downstream targets in IL-6 signaling (JAK1, STAT3, RAF1, and ELK1) were upregulated in KFs versus NFs. Our results indicate that IL-6 signaling may play an integral role in keloid pathogenesis and provide clues for development of IL-6 receptor blocking strategies for therapy or prophylaxis of keloid scars.

PMID:
17024100
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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