Platelet-activating factor and hydrogen peroxide exert a dual modulatory effect on the transcription of LXRα and its target genes in human neutrophils

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Liver X receptors (LXRs) are ligand-activated nuclear receptors involved mainly in the regulation of cholesterol metabolism in many organs, including liver and intestine, as well as in macrophages and neutrophils. Besides, both anti-inflammatory and pro-inflammatory properties have been ascribed to LXRs. The effect of the inflammatory condition on the expression of LXRα and its target genes has not been previously addressed in human neutrophils. We have described that platelet-activating factor (PAF) and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) are potent pro-inflammatory mediators that link the haemostatic and innate immune systems. In this work we report that H2O2 at low doses (1 pM-1 μM) exerts an inhibitory effect on TO901317-induced mRNA expression of LXRα and of its target genes encoding the ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporters ABCA1 and ABCG1, and the sterol regulatory element-binding protein 1c (SREBP1c). However, an opposite behaviour, i.e., a transcription-enhancing effect, was found at higher H2O2 doses (100–500 μM) on most of these genes. A similar dual effect was observed when the pro-inflammatory molecule PAF was used. Interestingly, H2O2 production separately elicited by 10 nM PAF or 1 μM H2O2 was similarly low, and analogously, H2O2 production levels elicited by 5 μM PAF or 100 μM H2O2 were similarly high when they were compared. On the other hand, low doses of PAF or H2O2 induced phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1 and 2 (ERK 1/2) and NF-κB activation, However, PAF or H2O2 at high doses did not produce changes in NF-κB activation levels. In summary, our results show that H2O2, either exogenous or PAF-induced, exerts a dual regulation on mRNA expression of LXRα and its target genes.

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