Send to

Choose Destination
J Immunol. 2014 Jan 15;192(2):722-31. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.1302496. Epub 2013 Dec 16.

Smooth muscle cells relay acute pulmonary inflammation via distinct ADAM17/ErbB axes.

Author information

Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Rheinisch-Westfaelische Technische Hochschule Aachen University, 52074 Aachen, Germany.


In acute pulmonary inflammation, danger is first recognized by epithelial cells lining the alveolar lumen and relayed to vascular responses, including leukocyte recruitment and increased endothelial permeability. We supposed that this inflammatory relay critically depends on the immunological function of lung interstitial cells such as smooth muscle cells (SMC). Mice with smooth muscle protein-22α promotor-driven deficiency of the disintegrin and metalloproteinase (ADAM) 17 (SM22-Adam17(-/-)) were investigated in models of acute pulmonary inflammation (LPS, cytokine, and acid instillation). Underlying signaling mechanisms were identified in cultured tracheal SMC and verified by in vivo reconstitution experiments. SM22-Adam17(-/-) mice showed considerably decreased cytokine production and vascular responses in LPS- or acid-induced pulmonary inflammation. In vitro, ADAM17 deficiency abrogated cytokine release of primary SMC stimulated with LPS or supernatant of acid-exposed epithelial cells. This was explained by a loss of ADAM17-mediated growth factor shedding. LPS responses required ErbB1/epidermal growth factor receptor transactivation by TGFα, whereas acid responses required ErbB4 transactivation by neuregulins. Finally, LPS-induced pulmonary inflammation in SM22-Adam17(-/-) mice was restored by exogenous TGFα application, confirming the involvement of transactivation pathways in vivo. This highlights a new decisive immunological role of lung interstitial cells such as SMC in promoting acute pulmonary inflammation by ADAM17-dependent transactivation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire
Loading ...
Support Center