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Chest. 2009 Aug;136(2):561-570. doi: 10.1378/chest.08-1549. Epub 2009 Mar 24.

Characterization of primary cilia in human airway smooth muscle cells.

Author information

1
Kidney Institute of the China People's Liberation Army, Changzheng Hospital, Second Military Medical University, Shanghai, People's Republic of China.
2
Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, MN.
3
Department of Medicine, and the Department of Physiology and Biomedical Engineering, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, MN.
4
Division of Nephrology and Hypertension, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, MN; Department of Medicine, and the Department of Physiology and Biomedical Engineering, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Rochester, MN. Electronic address: qian.qi@mayo.edu.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Considerable evidence indicates a key role for primary cilia of mammalian cells in mechanochemical sensing. Dysfunctions of primary cilia have been linked to the pathogenesis of several human diseases. However, cilia-related research has been limited to a few cell and tissue types; to our knowledge, no literature exists on primary cilia in airway smooth muscle (ASM). The aim of this study was to characterize primary cilia in human ASM.

METHODS:

Primary cilia of human bronchial smooth muscle cells (HBSMCs) were examined using immunofluorescence confocal microscopy, and scanning and transmission electron microscopy. HBSMC migration and injury repair were examined by scratch-wound and epidermal growth factor (EGF)-induced migration assays.

RESULTS:

Cross-sectional images of normal human bronchi revealed that primary cilia of HBSMCs within each ASM bundle aggregated at the same horizontal level, forming a "cilium layer." Individual cilia of HBSMCs projected into extracellular matrix and exhibited varying degrees of deflection. Mechanochemical sensing molecules, polycystins, and alpha2-, alpha5-, and beta1-integrins were enriched in cilia, as was EGF receptor, known to activate jointly with integrins during cell migration. Migration assays demonstrated a ciliary contribution to HBSMC migration and wound repair.

CONCLUSIONS:

The primary cilia of ASM cells exert a role in sensing and transducing extracellular mechanochemical signals and in ASM injury repair. Defects in ASM ciliary function could potentially affect airway wall maintenance and/or remodeling, possibly relating to the genesis of bronchiectasis in autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease, a disease of ciliopathy.

PMID:
19318679
PMCID:
PMC2733948
DOI:
10.1378/chest.08-1549
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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