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Immunol Lett. 2006 May 15;105(1):61-7. Epub 2006 Jan 30.

The effect of transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta1 and (TGF)-beta2 on nasal polyp fibroblast activities involved upper airway remodeling: modulation by fluticasone propionate.

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  • 1Pulmonary Disease Unit, G. Gaslini Institute, Largo G. Gaslini 4, 16148 Genoa, Italy.


Transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta may play a significant role in nasal polyposis pathogenesis, possibly through fibroblast activation. We studied the effects of two TGF-beta isoforms (TGF-beta1 and TGF-beta2) on nasal polyposis fibroblasts by evaluating cell proliferation and differentiation into myofibroblasts. In addition, the inhibitory activity of different concentrations of fluticasone propionate (F.P.) was tested in this in vitro system. Primary nasal polyp tissue-derived fibroblasts were stimulated with different concentrations (1, 10 and 20 ng/ml) of TGF-beta1 and TGF-beta2 for different incubation periods (24, 48 and 72 h) and cell proliferation [3H thymidine ([3H]TdR) incorporation] and alpha-smooth muscle actin (alpha-SMA) expression (immunocytochemistry) was evaluated. The lowest concentration of TGF-beta1 (1 ng/ml) induced a significant increase in [3H]TdR incorporation at 48 and 72 h (p<0.05, each comparison), while in the presence of TGF-beta (10 ng/ml) and TGF-beta2 (1 ng/ml) the enhancement in cell proliferation was significant only after 48 h (p<0.05, each comparison with the unstimulated cells). In contrast, a significant increase in alpha-SMA expression was observed in the presence of the two highest concentration of both TGF-beta isoforms, at 48 and 72 h for TGF-beta1 (p<0.05, each comparison), but only at 72 h for TGF-beta2 (<0.05, each comparison). Finally, at all concentrations tested, F.P. significantly inhibited the TGF-beta1 and TGF-beta2-induced 3HTdR incorporation (p<0.01, each comparison) and the alpha-SMA expression (p<0.05, each comparison). Thus, in vitro different concentrations of TGF-beta1 and TGF-beta2 appear to sequentially stimulate primary nasal polyp tissue-derived fibroblast proliferation and myofibroblast differentiation. These activities are effectively inhibited by F.P.

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