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J Immunol. 1994 Jun 1;152(11):5485-94.

Crystal-induced neutrophil activation. V. Differential production of biologically active IL-1 and IL-1 receptor antagonist.

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Laval University Hospital Center, Québec, Canada.


Neutrophils produce IL-1 when stimulated by monosodium urate (MSU) or calcium pyrophosphate dihydrate (CPPD) crystals. Neutrophils also generate the IL-1R antagonist (IL-1Ra), especially when incubated with granulocyte-macrophage CSF (GM-CSF) or TNF-alpha. We studied the simultaneous expression of IL-1 and IL-1Ra by GM-CSF- or TNF-alpha-treated neutrophils activated by MSU or CPPD. Neutrophils incubated with GM-CSF or TNF-alpha produced approximately 300 or 200 times more IL-1Ra than IL-1, respectively. Suboptimal concentrations of MSU or CPPD induced low amounts of IL-1 without affecting IL-1Ra. Interaction of GM-CSF- and TNF-alpha-treated neutrophils with MSU or CPPD up-regulated IL-1 while simultaneously down-regulating IL-1Ra. As a result, the bioactivity of IL-1 secreted was enhanced. Synergistic increases of IL-1 (but not IL-1Ra) mRNA levels were noted in GM-CSF- or TNF-alpha-treated neutrophils exposed to CPPD. Treatment of neutrophils with colchicine before incubation with GM-CSF or TNF alpha, inhibited crystal-induced IL-1 by 50 to 55%, but failed to significantly affect IL-1Ra. The IL-1Ra to IL-1 ratio was significantly increased by 185 to 220%. These results demonstrate that IL-1 and IL-1Ra production by human neutrophils are differentially regulated, that the combined presence of GM-CSF or TNF-alpha and microcrystals favor the production of biologically active IL-1 over that of IL-1Ra, and that colchicine selectively inhibits IL-1 without affecting IL-1Ra production.

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