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Eur J Cancer. 2013 Aug;49(12):2760-70. doi: 10.1016/j.ejca.2013.03.031. Epub 2013 May 9.

Characterization of interleukin-1β in Helicobacter pylori-induced gastric inflammation and DNA methylation in interleukin-1 receptor type 1 knockout (IL-1R1(-/-)) mice.

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Department of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Queen Mary Hospital, Hong Kong.


Helicobacter pylori infection induced interleukin-1β (IL-1β) production and is associated with aberrant DNA methylation and gastric diseases. Here, we investigated the role of IL-1β in H. pylori-induced gastric inflammation and DNA methylation using IL-1 receptor type 1 knockout (IL-1R1(-/-)) mice, and compared the therapeutic efficacy of antimicrobial therapy with IL-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra). IL-1R1(-/-) and wild-type (WT) mice were infected with H. pylori for 16, 24 and 32 weeks. Infected WT mice at 24 weeks were given either antimicrobial therapy or IL-1ra. Comparing to the IL-1R1(-/-) mice, infected WT mice with functional IL-1β signaling had higher gastritis scores, higher IL-1β and iNOS mRNA expression, higher nitric oxide (NO) production and increased frequency of E-cadherin (E-cad) methylation at all the time points analyzed. IL-1β release was significantly elevated in infected WT mice than normal controls at 16 weeks post-infection (p<0.005). Treatment of infected mice with antimicrobial therapy and IL-1ra significantly reduced the degree of gastritis (p<0.005; p<0.05, respectively), iNOS expression (p<0.0001; p<0.01, respectively) and NO production (both p<0.001) compared with untreated controls. Mice receiving antimicrobial therapy had significantly lower IL-1β expression than untreated controls (p<0.0001). Both treatments reduced the incidence of E-cad methylation in infected mice compared with controls, however, no statistical significance was observed. There was no significant alteration of total DNA methyltransferase (DNMT) activity. These results demonstrated that IL-1β played a crucial role in H. pylori-induced gastric inflammation and DNA methylation. H. pylori eradication and IL-1ra administration could ameliorate inflammatory stress.


DNA methylation; E-cadherin; Gastric cancer; Helicobacter pylori; Inflammation; Interleukin-1β; Nitric oxide

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