Anti-endothelial cell antibodies (AECA) have been detected in the sera of patients with Behçet's disease (BD). The isotype of AECA from BD is IgM recognizing 44 kDa antigen (IgM-AECA) of human dermal microvascular endothelial cells (HDMEC). After stimulation of HDMEC with AECA-positive sera from BD patients, the expression of intercellular cell adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) on HDMEC increases significantly. Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) cascade is one of protein kinase families activated by a wide spectrum of extracellular stimuli. There are several subtypes, including extracellular signal regulated kinase (ERK)1/2, c-Jun NH2 terminal kinase (JNK), and p38 cascades, and they regulate various cellular processes such as cell growth, differentiation, and inflammation. We examined the involvement of MAPK as a signal transduction pathway in the IgM-AECA-induced ICAM-1 expression. We used enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) and fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS) for detecting the induction of ICAM-1 on HDMEC. We also examined the production of tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα) or interleukin-1α (IL-1α) by HDMEC after stimulation with IgM-AECA, and checked the involvement of MAPK by Western blot assay. IgM-AECA cocktail from 8 patients with BD induced expression of the ICAM-1 on HDMEC. Neither TNFα nor IL-1α was detected by ELISA, FACS or reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction in activated HDMEC cultures. IgM-AECA cocktail activated ERK1/2 and showed peak activities at 5 min after the stimulation. Specific MAPK/ERK kinase inhibitor PD98059 inhibited IgM-AECA-induced ERK1/2 activities and ICAM-1 expression on HDMEC at a concentration of 60 μM. IgM-AECA can play a pathogenic role in induction of vasculitis and inflammatory lesions of BD by directly activating endothelial cells, not by production of TNFα or IL-1α from HDMEC. ERK1/2 are involved in expression of ICAM-1 on HDMEC stimulated with IgM-AECA.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
This study was supported by a CMB-YUHAN research grant of Yonsei University College of Medicine for 1998 (No. 1998-3) and BK 21 project for Medical Science, Yonsei University.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology