The purpose of this study was to elucidate the signalling pathways involved in the cytokine-activated inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) response in a human kidney epithelial cell line, A498. Unstimulated cells did not express iNOS. Exposure of A498 cells to a cytokine mixture consisting of interferon gamma, interleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) increased nitrite production, iNOS mRNA and protein expression. Pharmacological inhibition of tyrosine kinases, including janus kinase (JAK2), and protein kinase C (PKC) inhibited cytokine-mediated nitrite production and iNOS protein expression. The involvement of mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) was investigated. Inhibition of p38 MAPK, but not of an upstream activator of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), caused a decrease in iNOS expression and nitrite production in response to cytokines. Electrophoretic mobility shift assay of nuclear extract from cytokine-stimulated cells demonstrated a pronounced binding to a nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) sequence present in the human iNOS promoter. Furthermore, the NF-κB inhibitor pyrrolidinedithiocarbamate (PDTC) decreased cytokine-activated iNOS protein expression and nitrite production. The present study has demonstrated that cytokine-stimulated iNOS expression in human kidney epithelial cells involves activation of tyrosine kinases, including JAK2, PKC, p38 MAPK and NF-κB.
European Journal of Pharmacology – Elsevier
Published: May 23, 2003
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