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PLoS One. 2012;7(5):e38317. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0038317. Epub 2012 May 31.

p38MAPK, ERK and PI3K signaling pathways are involved in C5a-primed neutrophils for ANCA-mediated activation.

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  • 1Renal Division, Key Laboratory of Renal Disease, Department of Medicine, Peking University First Hospital, Institute of Nephrology, Peking University, Ministry of Health of China, Beijing, China.



The complement system is one of the important contributing factors in the development of antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody (ANCA)-associated vasculitis (AAV). C5a and the neutrophil C5a receptor play a central role in antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody (ANCA)-mediated neutrophil recruitment and activation. The current study further investigated the signaling pathways of C5a-mediated priming of human neutrophils for ANCA-induced neutrophil activation.


The effects of the p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38MAPK) inhibitor (SB202190), extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) inhibitor (PD98059), c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) inhibitor (6o) and phosphoinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) inhibitor (LY294002) were tested on respiratory burst and degranulation of C5a-primed neutrophils activated with ANCA, as well as on C5a-induced increase in expression of membrane-bound PR3 (mPR3) on neutrophils. For C5a-primed neutrophils for MPO-ANCA-induced respiratory burst, the mean fluorescence intensity (MFI) value was 254.8±67.1, which decreased to 203.6±60.3, 204.4±36.7, 202.4±49.9 and 188±47.9 upon pre-incubation with SB202190, PD98059, LY294002 and the mixture of above-mentioned three inhibitors (compared with that without inhibitors, P<0.01, P<0.05, P<0.01 and P<0.05), respectively. For PR3-ANCA-positive IgG, the MFI value increased in C5a-primed neutrophils, which decreased upon pre-incubation with above-mentioned inhibitors. The lactoferrin concentration increased in C5a-primed neutrophils induced by MPO or PR3-ANCA-positive IgG supernatant and decreased upon pre-incubation with above-mentioned three inhibitors. mPR3 expression increased from 923.3±182.4 in untreated cells to 1278.3±299.3 after C5a treatment and decreased to 1069.9±188.9, 1100±238.2, 1092.3±231.8 and 1053.9±200.3 by SB202190, PD98059, LY294002 and the mixture of above-mentioned three inhibitors (compared with that without inhibitors, P<0.01, P<0.05, P<0.01 and P<0.01), respectively.


Activation of p38MAPK, ERK and PI3K are important steps in the translocation of ANCA antigens and C5a-induced activation of neutrophils by ANCA.

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