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J Immunol. 2010 Nov 15;185(10):6214-25. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.0903843. Epub 2010 Oct 11.

CXCL1 regulates pulmonary host defense to Klebsiella Infection via CXCL2, CXCL5, NF-kappaB, and MAPKs.

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Department of Pathobiological Sciences,Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, USA.


Pulmonary bacterial infections are a leading cause of death. Since the introduction of antibiotics, multidrug-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae became an escalating threat. Therefore, development of methods to augment antibacterial defense is warranted. Neutrophil recruitment is critical to clear bacteria, and neutrophil migration in the lung requires the production of ELR(+) CXC chemokines. Although lung-specific CXCL1/keratinocyte cell-derived chemokine (KC) transgene expression causes neutrophil-mediated clearance of K. pneumoniae, the mechanisms underlying KC-mediated host defense against K. pneumoniae have not been explored. In this study, we delineated the host defense functions of KC during pulmonary K. pneumoniae infection using KC(-/-) mice. Our findings demonstrate that KC is important for expression of CXCL2/MIP-2 and CXCL5/LPS-induced CXC chemokine, and activation of NF-κB and MAPKs in the lung. Furthermore, KC derived from both hematopoietic and resident cells contributes to host defense against K. pneumoniae. Neutrophil depletion in mice before K. pneumoniae infection reveals no differences in the production of MIP-2 and LPS-induced CXC chemokine or activation of NF-κB and MAPKs in the lung. Using murine bone marrow-derived and alveolar macrophages, we confirmed KC-mediated upregulation of MIP-2 and activation of NF-κB and MAPKs on K. pneumoniae infection. Moreover, neutralizing KC in bone marrow-derived macrophages before K. pneumoniae challenge decreases bacteria-induced production of KC and MIP-2, and activation of NF-κB and MAPKs. These findings reveal the importance of KC produced by hematopoietic and resident cells in regulating pulmonary host defense against a bacterial pathogen via the activation of transcription factors and MAPKs, as well as the expression of cell adhesion molecules and other neutrophil chemoattractants.

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