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EGF-expressed human mesenchymal stem cells inhibit collagenase1 expression in keratinocytes.

Cellular Signalling 2023 July 27
Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) repair tissue injury by upregulating the paracrine secretion of cytokines and growth factors. Human MSC has been recognized as a promising therapeutic material for treatment of various human diseases. Even though the effect of epidermal growth factor (EGF) has been well investigated, the synergetic effect of EGF and MSC has not been studied. Therefore, we expect our basic study to contribute to developing new therapeutic reagents for skin diseases or innovative cosmetics. In this study, we examined the effect of human epidermal growth factor-transfected MSCs (hEGF MSCs) on human keratinocyte HaCaT cell proliferation and the mechanisms that regulate matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-1 expression in HaCaT cells. To identify the hEGF plasmid and its transfection into MSCs, we performed gel electrophoresis and quantitative PCR. Proliferation and migration of HaCaT cells were examined using water Soluble Tetrazolium (WST-1) and wound-healing assays, respectively. Zymography was performed to investigate the correlation between hEGF MSC-conditioned medium (CM)-treated HaCaT cells and MMP-1 expression. We found that cell proliferation and wound-healing rates were increased in hEGF MSC-CM-treated HaCaT cells compared to those in MSC-CM-treated cells, and conversely collagenase activity was decreased. The mRNA and protein levels of MMP-1 were also decreased in hEGF MSC-CM-treated HaCaT cells. 2-DE analysis showed that the expression of carboxypeptidase, which promotes growth factors and wound healing, was increased in hEGF MSC-CM-treated HaCaT cells. Finally, western blot was used to determine whether MMP-1 expression was reduced via the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway; the results showed that the levels of MAPK pathway-related proteins (pErk, pJNK, and p-p38) and the levels of transcription factors (pCREB, NFκB, and p-c-Fos) were decreased. In addition, pAkt expression was found to be elevated. The results of our study suggest that hEGF MSCs promote cell proliferation and reduce MMP-1 expression via the MAPK pathway in human keratinocyte HaCaT cells.

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