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J Clin Invest. 2008 Feb;118(2):479-90. doi: 10.1172/JCI32789.

Pin1 regulates TGF-beta1 production by activated human and murine eosinophils and contributes to allergic lung fibrosis.

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Waisman Center for Developmental Disabilities, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, Wisconsin 53705, USA.


Eosinophilic inflammation is a cornerstone of chronic asthma that often culminates in subepithelial fibrosis with variable airway obstruction. Pulmonary eosinophils (Eos) are a predominant source of TGF-beta1, which drives fibroblast proliferation and extracellular matrix deposition. We investigated the regulation of TGF-beta1 and show here that the peptidyl-prolyl isomerase (PPIase) Pin1 promoted the stability of TGF-beta1 mRNA in human Eos. In addition, Pin1 regulated cytokine production by both in vitro and in vivo activated human Eos. We found that Pin1 interacted with both PKC-alpha and protein phosphatase 2A, which together control Pin1 isomerase activity. Pharmacologic blockade of Pin1 in a rat asthma model selectively reduced eosinophilic pulmonary inflammation, TGF-beta1 and collagen expression, and airway remodeling. Furthermore, chronically challenged Pin1(-/-) mice showed reduced peribronchiolar collagen deposition compared with wild-type controls. These data suggest that pharmacologic suppression of Pin1 may be a novel therapeutic option to prevent airway fibrosis in individuals with chronic asthma.

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