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J Cell Physiol. 2012 Jun;227(6):2578-85. doi: 10.1002/jcp.22996.

MC1R expression in HaCaT keratinocytes inhibits UVA-induced ROS production via NADPH oxidase- and cAMP-dependent mechanisms.

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  • 1Institute of Biomolecules Max Mousseron (IBMM), University Montpellier I and II, UMR CNRS 5247, Montpellier Cedex 5, France.


Ultraviolet A (UVA) radiations are responsible for deleterious effects, mainly due to reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. Alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH) binds to melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R) in melanocytes to stimulate pigmentation and modulate cutaneous inflammatory responses. MC1R may be induced in keratinocytes after UV exposure. To investigate the effect of MC1R signaling on UVA-induced ROS (UVA-ROS) production, we generated HaCaT cells that stably express human MC1R (HaCaT-MC1R) or the Arg151Cys (R(151)C) non-functional variant (HaCaT-R(151)C). We then assessed ROS production immediately after UVA exposure and found that: (1) UVA-ROS production was strongly reduced in HaCaT-MC1R but not in HaCaT-R(151)C cells compared to parental HaCaT cells; (2) this inhibitory effect was further amplified by incubation of HaCaT-MC1R cells with α-MSH before UVA exposure; (3) protein kinase A (PKA)-dependent NoxA1 phosphorylation was increased in HaCaT-MC1R compared to HaCaT and HaCaT-R(151)C cells. Inhibition of PKA in HaCaT-MC1R cells resulted in a marked increase of ROS production after UVA irradiation; (4) the ability of HaCaT-MC1R cells to produce UVA-ROS was restored by inhibiting epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) or extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK) activity before UVA exposure. Our findings suggest that constitutive activity of MC1R in keratinocytes may reduce UVA-induced oxidative stress via EGFR and cAMP-dependent mechanisms.

Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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