Tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) induces integrin CD11b/CD18 (Mac-1) up-regulation and migration to the CC chemokine CCL3 (MIP-1alpha) on human neutrophils through defined signalling pathways

Fabrizio Montecucco, Sabine Steffens, Fabienne Burger, Ana Da Costa, Giordano Bianchi, Maria Bertolotto, François Mach, Franco Dallegri, Luciano Ottonello
Cellular Signalling 2008, 20 (3): 557-68
Strong evidence suggests that neutrophils may play an active role in acute and chronic inflammatory disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis and atherosclerosis. Given the role of pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF-alpha in these inflammatory processes, we planned the present study to investigate the effect of short term incubation with TNF-alpha on neutrophil migration to CCL3, a chemokine produced in inflammatory sites and normally devoid of neutrophil chemotactic properties. We found that TNF-alpha primed neutrophils for migration to CCL3 via CCR5. TNF-alpha-induced migration was a consequence of the TNF-alpha-induced up-regulation of integrin CD11b/CD18 (Mac-1) on neutrophil surface. Furthermore, TNF-alpha activity was found to be strictly dependent on the activation of ERK 1/2 p44, cooperating with the intracellular pathways involving Src kinases, PI3K/Akt, p38 MAPK, well known as activated in response to classical chemoattractants (CXCL8) or priming agents (GM-CSF). On the contrary, the effect of TNF-alpha on neutrophil migration to CCL3 was not dependent on JNK 1/2. In conclusion, the present report shows that TNF-alpha unveils a previously unknown capacity of neutrophils to migrate to CCL3 through the intervention of Mac-1. TNF-alpha regulates Mac-1 up-regulation through signalling pathways, involving various kinases, but not JNK 1/2. Although highly speculative, ERK 1/2 p44 may represent a selective target for the pharmacologic manipulation of neutrophil-mediated adverse activities in TNF-alpha-mediated inflammatory states.

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