Interleukin-8 gene regulation in epithelial cells byVibrio cholerae: role of multiple promoter elements, adherence and motility of bacteria and host MAPKs

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Interleukin (IL)-8 is an important mediator in neutrophil-mediated acute inflammation. We previously demonstrated that incubation of intestinal epithelial cells with Vibrio cholerae O395 resulted in increased IL-8 mRNA expression and IL-8 secretion, which was associated with the adherence and motility of bacteria. However, the mechanisms responsible for transcriptional regulation of the IL-8 gene in epithelial cells during V. cholerae infections were not explored. Transient transfection analysis of 5′ deletions and mutations of the IL-8 promoter driving expression of the luciferase reporter gene indicates that multiple binding sites contribute to IL-8 promoter induction in response to V. cholerae and that cooperation among these different sites is required for full activation of the promoter. Stimulation with V. cholerae O395 insertional mutants, defective in adherence and motility, significantly reduced IL-8 promoter activity compared with the wild-type strain. We further demonstrate maximal involvement of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2/mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways to regulate IL-8 gene transcription. This study will help to design agents which could reduce the V. cholerae-induced inflammatory response and in the generation of safe vaccines.

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