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Clin Dev Immunol. 2012;2012:548516. doi: 10.1155/2012/548516. Epub 2011 Oct 11.

Deranged bioenergetics and defective redox capacity in T lymphocytes and neutrophils are related to cellular dysfunction and increased oxidative stress in patients with active systemic lupus erythematosus.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, National Taiwan University Hospital and National Taiwan University College of Medicine, 7 Chung-Shan South Road, Taipei 100, Taiwan.


Urinary excretion of N-benzoyl-glycyl-Nε-(hexanonyl)lysine, a biomarker of oxidative stress, was higher in 26 patients with active systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) than in 11 non-SLE patients with connective tissue diseases and in 14 healthy volunteers. We hypothesized that increased oxidative stress in active SLE might be attributable to deranged bioenergetics, defective reduction-oxidation (redox) capacity, or other factors. We demonstrated that, compared to normal cells, T lymphocytes (T) and polymorphonuclear neutrophils (PMN) of active SLE showed defective expression of facilitative glucose transporters GLUT-3 and GLUT-6, which led to increased intracellular basal lactate and decreased ATP production. In addition, the redox capacity, including intracellular GSH levels and the enzyme activity of glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) and γ-glutamyl-transpeptidase (GGT), was decreased in SLE-T. Compared to normal cells, SLE-PMN showed decreased intracellular GSH levels, and GGT enzyme activity was found in SLE-PMN and enhanced expression of CD53, a coprecipitating molecule for GGT. We conclude that deranged cellular bioenergetics and defective redox capacity in T and PMN are responsible for cellular immune dysfunction and are related to increased oxidative stress in active SLE patients.

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