IL-1β directly inhibits milk lipid production in lactating mammary epithelial cells concurrently with enlargement of cytoplasmic lipid droplets

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Abstract

Mammary epithelial cells (MECs) in lactating mammary glands produce milk lipid, which provides a large percentage of calories and bioactive lipids for appropriate infant growth. However, secreted milk lipid is often reduced concurrently with increases in IL-1β, IL-6, and TNF-α in mammary glands with mastitis. In this study, we investigated whether those cytokines directly influenced lipid production and secretion. A lactating MEC culture model with high lipid production ability was prepared by culture with oleic acid. TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-6 differentially affected lipid production and secretion in lactating MECs. In particular, IL-1β treatment significantly reduced amounts of secreted triglycerides by 97% compared with the control concurrently with enlargement of cytoplasmic lipid droplets in MECs. IL-1β also decreased mRNA expression of Fabp3 and Srebp1 and the amount of aquaporin 3, GLUT-1 and adipophilin in the milk lipid production pathway. Furthermore, IL-1β inactivated STAT5 and glucocorticoid signaling to induce milk production in MECs, whereas STAT3 and NFκB signaling was activated. IL-1β induced mRNA expression of IL-6 and TNF-α in MECs. Therefore, we suggest that IL-1β is a key inhibitor of lipid production and secretion in lactating MECs.

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