ApoA-1 Mimetic Peptide ELK-2A2K2E Decreases Inflammatory Factor Levels Through the ABCA1-JAK2-STAT3-TTP Axis in THP-1–Derived Macrophages

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Objective:The aim of this study was to determine whether the apolipoprotein A-1 (apoA-1) mimetic peptide ELK-2A2K2E regulates inflammatory cytokine expression through activating the adenosine triphosphate–binding cassette transporter A1 (ABCA1)-janus kinase 2 (JAK2)-signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3)-tristetraprolin (TTP) signaling pathway in THP-1 macrophage-derived foam cells.Methods and Results:The cells were treated with the apoA-1 mimetic peptide ELK-2A2K2E at different concentrations (0, 20, 40, and 80 μg/mL) or incubated with ELK-2A2K2E (40 μg/mL) for different times (0, 6, 12, and 24 hours). Our results showed that the levels of the cytokines, such as tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-6 (IL-6), and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1), were decreased at both concentration- and time-dependent manners. When the cells were exposed to lipopolysaccharides and actinomycin D, ELK-2A2K2E significantly decreased the mRNA stability of inflammatory cytokines at different time points (0, 30, 60, and 120 minutes) by increasing TTP expression as analyzed by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction. The effect of ELK-2A2K2E on TTP was obviously blocked by the inhibition of the JAK-STAT3 pathway. Furthermore, we found that ELK-2A2K2E activated the JAK-STAT3-TTP pathway through the upregulation of ABCA1 and then decreased inflammatory cytokine expression.Conclusions:ApoA-I mimetic peptide ELK-2A2K2E increases the degradation of TNF-α, IL-6, and MCP-1 mRNA and reduces the levels of inflammatory cytokines through activating the JAK2-STAT3-TTP signaling pathway that is dependent on the upregulation of ABCA1.

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