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IL-1β expression in the distal lung epithelium disrupts lung morphogenesis and epithelial cell differentiation in fetal mice.

Journal article
Authors Anna Hogmalm
Maija Bry
Birgitta Strandvik
Kristina Bry
Published in American journal of physiology. Lung cellular and molecular physiology
Volume 306
Issue 1
Pages L23-L34
ISSN 1522-1504
Publication year 2014
Published at Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Pediatrics
Pages L23-L34
Language en
Keywords surfactant, inflammation, microvascular development, alveolarization, bronchopulmonary dysplasia
Subject categories Pediatrics


Perinatal inflammation and the inflammatory cytokine IL-1 can modify lung morphogenesis. To examine the effects of antenatal expression of IL-1β in the distal airway epithelium on fetal lung morphogenesis, we studied lung development and surfactant expression in fetal mice expressing human IL-1β under the control of the surfactant protein (SP)-C promoter. IL-1β-expressing pups suffered respiratory failure and died shortly after birth. IL-1β caused fetal lung inflammation and enhanced the expression of keratinocyte-derived chemokine (KC/CXCL1) and monocyte chemoattractant protein 3 (MCP-3/CCL7), the calgranulins S100A8 and S100A9, the acute-phase protein serum amyloid A3 (SAA3), the chitinase-like proteins Ym1 and Ym2, and pendrin. IL-1β decreased the percentage of the total distal lung area made up of air saccules and the number of air saccules in the lungs of fetal mice. IL-1β inhibited the expression of VEGF-A and of its receptors VEGFR-1 and VEGFR-2. The percentage of the cellular area of the distal lung made up of capillaries was decreased in IL-1β-expressing fetal mice. IL-1β suppressed the production of SP-B and pro-SP-C, and decreased the amount of phosphatidylcholine and the percentage of palmitic acid in the phosphatidylcholine fraction of lung phospholipids, indicating that IL-1β prevented the differentiation of type II epithelial cells. The production of Clara cell secretory protein (CCSP) in the nonciliated bronchiolar (Clara) cells was likewise suppressed by IL-1β. In conclusion, expression of IL-1β in the epithelium of the distal airways disrupted the development of the airspaces and capillaries in the fetal lung and caused fatal respiratory failure at birth.

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