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Immunology - Pharmacology - Physiology - Respiratory Medicine

Roflumilast-N-oxide Induces Surfactant Protein Expression in Human Alveolar Epithelial Cells Type II
Published: Monday, July 16, 2012
Author: Kerstin Höhne et al.

by Kerstin Höhne, Stephan J. Schließmann, Andreas Kirschbaum, Till Plönes, Joachim Müller-Quernheim, Hermann Tenor, Gernot Zissel

Surfactant proteins (SPs) are important lipoprotein complex components, expressed in alveolar epithelial cells type II (AEC-II), and playing an essential role in maintenance of alveolar integrity and host defence. Because expressions of SPs are regulated by cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP), we hypothesized that phosphodiesterase (PDE) inhibitors, influence SP expression and release. Analysis of PDE activity of our AEC-II preparations revealed that PDE4 is the major cAMP hydrolysing PDE in human adult AEC-II. Thus, freshly isolated human AEC-II were stimulated with two different concentrations of the PDE4 inhibitor roflumilast-N-oxide (3 nM and 1 µM) to investigate the effect on SP expression. SP mRNA levels disclosed a large inter-individual variation. Therefore, the experiments were grouped by the basal SP expression in low and high expressing donors. AEC-II stimulated with Roflumilast-N-oxide showed a minor increase in SP-A1, SP-C and SP-D mRNA mainly in low expressing preparations. To overcome the effects of different basal levels of intracellular cAMP, cyclooxygenase was blocked by indomethacin and cAMP production was reconstituted by prostaglandin E2 (PGE2). Under these conditions SP-A1, SP-A2, SP-B and SP-D are increased by roflumilast-N-oxide in low expressing preparations. Roflumilast-N-oxide fosters the expression of SPs in human AEC-II via increase of intracellular cAMP levels potentially contributing to improved alveolar host defence and enhanced resolution of inflammation.