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Ren Fail. 2002 Sep;24(5):567-75.

Cytokine expression in the renal tubular epithelial cells stimulated by Shiga toxin 2 of Escherichia coli O157:H7.

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Department of Clinical Research Center, Samsung Biomedical Research Institute, Seoul, Korea.


Hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) is the most common cause of acute renal failure in children worldwide. Shiga toxin (Stx) associated HUS, the most common type, is now known to be caused by Escherichia coli O157:7, which produces Stxl or the more potent, Stx2. Since the renal tubule is the major tissue affected in the course of HUS and Stx2 is known to be toxic to the renal tubular cells (RTC), we attempted to elucidate the mechanism of renal injury in HUS by studying the alteration of cytokines in the RTC evoked by Stx2. cDNA-array is a powerful tool for evaluating changes in the expression of a group of critical genes and also gives insights on the overview of the gene activation. In this study, we purified Stx2 from the E. coli O157:7, which was isolated from a typical diarrhea-associated HUS patient and then tried to compare the cytokine gene expression between the stimulated RTC and un-stimulated RTC using cDNA-array. Our results showed that one third of the examined cytokine genes were up regulated at least twice by the addition of Vtx2. These up-regulated genes represented the chemokines (macrophage related cytokines), fibrosis-related cytokine (TNF, PDGF) and leukemia inhibitory factors. However, the expression of IL-6, one of the pleiotropic cytokines, was significantly decreased and this finding was confirmed by northern analysis. Our results suggest that VT2 up-regulates the pro-inflammatory cytokines and fibrosis prone growth factors in RTC and that the inhibition of the activation of these cytokines may ameliorate the renal tubular injury in the HUS caused by E. coli O157:7.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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