J Immunol. 2016 Oct 1;197(7):2864-79. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.1600043. Epub 2016 Aug 26.

Nrf2 Modulates Host Defense during Streptococcus pneumoniae Pneumonia in Mice.

Gomez JC1, Dang H2, Martin JR1, Doerschuk CM3.

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Nrf2 regulates the transcriptional response to oxidative stress. These studies tested the role of Nrf2 during Streptococcus pneumoniae pneumonia and identified Nrf2-dependent genes and pathways in lung tissue and in recruited neutrophils. Nrf2 null and wild type (WT) mice were studied at 6 and 24 h after instillation of S. pneumoniae or PBS. At 6 h, fewer neutrophils were recruited and the number of bacteria remaining in the lungs tended to be less (p = 0.06) in the Nrf2 null compared with WT mice. In uninfected lungs, 53 genes were already differentially expressed in Nrf2 null compared with WT mouse lungs, and gene sets involved in phagocytosis, Fc receptor function, complement, and Ig regulation are enhanced in PBS-treated Nrf2 null gene profiles compared with those of WT mice. These results suggest that initial host defense is enhanced in Nrf2 null mice, resulting in less recruitment of neutrophils. At 24 h, neutrophil recruitment was greater. The percentages of early apoptotic and late apoptotic/necrotic neutrophils were similar. At increasing inoculum numbers, mortality rates strikingly increased from 15 to 31 and 100% in Nrf2 null mice, whereas all WT mice survived, and Nrf2 null mice had a defect in clearance, particularly at the intermediate dose. The mortality was due to enhanced lung injury and greater systemic response. Gene profiling identified differentially regulated genes and pathways in neutrophils and lung tissue, including those involved in redox stress response, metabolism, inflammation, immunoregulatory pathways, and tissue repair, providing insight into the mechanisms for the greater tissue damage and increased neutrophil accumulation.

Copyright © 2016 by The American Association of Immunologists, Inc.

PMID: 27566827 PMCID: PMC5026972 [Available on 2017-10-01] DOI: 10.4049/jimmunol.1600043

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