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Inflammation. 2003 Dec;27(6):329-32.

Gram-negative, but not Gram-positive, bacteria elicit strong PGE2 production in human monocytes.

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Department of Clinical Bacteriology, Göteborg University, Guldhedsgatan 10, SE-413 46 Göteborg, Sweden.


Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria induce different cytokine patterns in human mononuclear cells. We have seen that Gram-positives preferentially induce IL-12 and TNF-alpha, whereas Gram-negatives induce more IL-10, IL-6, and IL-8. In this study, we compared the capacity of these two groups of bacteria to induce PGE2. Monocytes stimulated with Gram-negative bacterial species induced much more PGE2 than did Gram-positive bacteria (5600 +/- 330 vs. 1700 +/- 670 pg/mL, p < 0.001). Blocking of COX-2 by NS398 abolished PGE2 production, but did not alter the cytokine patterns induced by Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. We suggest that Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria may stimulate different innate effector functions; Gram-positive bacteria promoting cell-mediated effector functions whereas Gram-negative bacteria inducing mediators inhibiting the same.

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