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Circ Res. 1999 Dec 3-17;85(12):1124-31.

Oncostatin M induces interleukin-6 and cyclooxygenase-2 expression in human vascular smooth muscle cells : synergy with interleukin-1beta.

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Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale U141, Paris, France.


Oncostatin M (OSM), a cytokine first identified from activated monocytes and T lymphocytes, is one of the most potent autocrine growth factor for AIDS and Kaposi's sarcoma. Little is known about the effects of OSM on normal vascular cells. We thus exposed human aortic smooth muscle cells (hASMCs) to OSM, examined cell proliferation and morphology, and determined interleukin-6 (IL-6) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) expression. OSM had a weak antiproliferative effect. After a 4-day incubation with 100 ng/mL OSM, cell count decreased to 69+/-3% of control. However, OSM induced striking changes in hASMC morphology, characterized by a polyclonal shape, in contrast to the spindle morphological feature of control hASMCs. OSM stimulated the release of IL-6 by hASMCs in a dose-dependent way; after a 48-hour exposure, values were 8.5+/-0.7, 29.7+/-3.5, 50.9+/-4.4, and 73.8+/-7.6x10(3) U/mL (n=6) at OSM concentrations of 0, 1, 10, and 100 ng/mL, respectively. OSM induced marked expression of COX-2 protein and mRNA. Leukemia inhibitory factor had no effect on hASMCs, indicating that OSM effects on hASMCs were mediated by the OSM type II receptor and not by the leukemia inhibitory factor receptor. OSM used the JAK/STAT signaling pathway, as demonstrated by rapid phosphorylation of JAK1 and specific activation of STAT1. Interestingly, OSM acted in synergy with IL-1beta on IL-6 production and COX-2 expression. In conclusion, OSM is a novel regulator of human smooth muscle cell functions, acting in concert with IL-1beta, and OSM may play a role in major vascular diseases such as atherosclerosis.

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