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J Immunol. 2003 Jun 1;170(11):5681-9.

Regulation of airway epithelial cell NF-kappa B-dependent gene expression by protein kinase C delta.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL 60637, USA.

Erratum in

  • J Immunol. 2003 Jul 15;171(2):following 1108. lasvoyskaia, S [corrected to lasvovskaia, S].


Airway epithelial cells synthesize proinflammatory molecules such as IL-8, GM-CSF, RANTES, and ICAM-1, the expression of which is increased in the airways of patients with asthma. We investigated the regulation of these NF-kappa B-dependent genes by the novel protein kinase C (PKC) isoform PKC delta in 16HBE14o- human airway epithelial cells, focusing on IL-8 expression. Transient transfection with the constitutively active catalytic subunit of PKC delta (PKC delta-CAT), and treatment with bryostatin 1, an activator of PKC delta, each increased transcription from the IL-8 promoter, whereas overexpression of PKC epsilon had minor effects. Expression of a dominant negative PKC delta mutant (PKC delta-KR) or pretreatment of cells with rottlerin, a chemical PKC delta inhibitor, attenuated TNF-alpha- and phorbol ester-induced transcription from the IL-8 promoter. Bryostatin 1 treatment increased IL-8 protein abundance in primary airway epithelial cells. Selective activation of PKC delta by bryostatin also activated NF-kappa B, as evidenced by p65 RelA and p50 NF-kappa B1 binding to DNA, NF-kappa B trans-activation, and I kappa B degradation. The sufficiency of PKC delta to induce NF-kappa B nuclear translocation and binding to DNA was confirmed in a 16HBE14o- cell line inducibly expressing PKC delta-CAT under the tet-off system. Deletion of the NF-kappa B response element severely attenuated PKC delta-induced IL-8 promoter activity. Finally, PKC delta-CAT induced transcription from the GM-CSF, RANTES, and ICAM-1 promoters. Together these data suggest that PKC delta plays a key role in the regulation of airway epithelial cell NF-kappa B-dependent gene expression.

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