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Inflammation. 2004 Dec;28(6):345-53.

Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli outer membrane proteins induce iNOS by activation of NF-kappaB and MAP kinases.

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  • 1Centre for Biotechnology, Anna University, Chennai 600 025, India.


Enteropathogenic Escherichia coli (EPEC) infects the human intestinal epithelium and is a major cause of infantile diarrhea in developing countries. Nitric oxide (NO) is an important modulator of intestinal inflammatory response. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether EPEC outer membrane proteins (OMPs) up regulate epithelial cell expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and to examine the role of NF-kappaB and MAP kinases (MAPK) on nitrite production. iNOS mRNA expression was assessed by RT-PCR. Nitrite levels were measured by Griess reaction. NF-kappaB activation by OMPs was evaluated by EMSA and immunoblotting was done to detect MAPK activation. EPEC OMP up regulated iNOS, induced nitrite production and NF-kappaB and MAPK were activated in caco-2 cells. The nitrite levels decreased when NF-kappaB and MAPK inhibitors were used. Thus, EPEC OMPs induce iNOS expression and NO production through activation of NF-kappaB and MAPK.

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