Caerulein-induced acute pancreatitis in mice that constitutively overexpress Reg/PAP genes.
ABSTRACT: The cystic fibrosis (CF) mouse pancreas has constitutively elevated expression of the Reg/PAP cell stress genes (60-fold greater Reg3alpha, and 10-fold greater PAP/Reg3beta and Reg3gamma). These genes are suggested to be involved in protection or recovery from pancreatic injury.To test this idea the supramaximal caerulein model was used to induce acute pancreatitis in wild type and CF mice. Serum amylase, pancreatic water content (as a measure of edema), pancreatic myeloperoxidase activity, and Reg/PAP expression were quantified.In both wild type and CF mice caerulein induced similar elevations in serum amylase (maximal at 12 h), pancreatic edema (maximal at 7 h), and pancreatic myeloperoxidase activity (MPO, a marker of neutrophil infiltration; maximal at 7 h). By immunohistochemistry, Reg3alpha was strongly expressed in the untreated CF pancreas but not in wild type. During pancreatitis, Reg3alpha was intensely expressed in foci of inflamed tissue in both wild type and CF.These data demonstrate that the severity of caerulein-induced pancreatitis is not ameliorated in the CF mouse even though the Reg/PAP stress genes are already highly upregulated. While Reg/PAP may be protective they may also have a negative effect during pancreatitis due to their anti-apoptotic activity, which has been shown to increase the severity of pancreatitis.
Project description:OBJECTIVE: Clinical reports link use of the glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor (GLP-1R) agonists exenatide and liraglutide to pancreatitis. However, whether these agents act on the exocrine pancreas is poorly understood. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: We assessed whether the antidiabetic agents exendin (Ex)-4, liraglutide, the dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitor sitagliptin, or the biguanide metformin were associated with changes in expression of genes associated with the development of experimental pancreatitis. The effects of Ex-4 when administered before or after the initiation of caerulein-induced experimental pancreatitis were determined. The importance of endogenous GLP-1R signaling for gene expression in the exocrine pancreas and the severity of pancreatitis was assessed in Glp1r(-/-) mice. RESULTS: Acute administration of Ex-4 increased expression of egr-1 and c-fos in the exocrine pancreas. Administration of Ex-4 or liraglutide for 1 week increased pancreas weight and induced expression of mRNA transcripts encoding the anti-inflammatory proteins pancreatitis-associated protein (PAP) (RegIIIbeta) and RegIIIalpha. Chronic Ex-4 treatment of high-fat-fed mice increased expression of PAP and reduced pancreatic expression of mRNA transcripts encoding for the proinflammatory monocyte chemotactic protein-1, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, and signal transducer and activator of transcription-3. Sitagliptin and metformin did not significantly change pancreatic gene expression profiles. Ex-4 administered before or after caerulein did not modify the severity of experimental pancreatitis, and levels of pancreatic edema and serum amylase were comparable in caerulein-treated Glp1r(-/-) versus Glp1r(+/+) mice. CONCLUSIONS: These findings demonstrate that GLP-1 receptor activation increases pancreatic mass and selectively modulates the expression of genes associated with pancreatitis. However, activation or genetic elimination of GLP-1R signaling does not modify the severity of experimental pancreatitis in mice.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Nitric oxide (NO) blockade by L-nitroarginine methyl ester (L-NAME) inhibits pancreatic secretion in vivo and aggravates caerulein induced pancreatitis. Nitric oxide synthase (NOS) is present in pancreatic islets, endothelium, and nerve fibres. L-NAME blocks all known NOS isoforms. AIM: To investigate the source of NO blocked by L-NAME that inhibits amylase secretion. METHODS: Amylase output was measured in rats in response to caerulein (0.1-50 microg/kg) alone or with indazole. Baseline secretion and the response to supramaximal caerulein were also examined after administration of indazole, L-NAME, haemoglobin, or aminoguanidine under continuous blood pressure measurement. In separate experiments, pancreatic secretion was measured after blockade of afferent nerve fibres by either systemic or local capsaicin. The effect of neural NOS inhibition on caerulein induced pancreatitis was also investigated. RESULTS: L-NAME, haemoglobin, and supramaximal caerulein (10 microg/kg) increased blood pressure, whereas indazole and suboptimal caerulein (0.1 microg/kg) did not. Indazole and capsaicin decreased basal amylase output. L-NAME and haemoglobin reduced basal amylase output to a lesser extent and potentiated the inhibitory response to supramaximal caerulein. In contrast, full neural NOS inhibition by L-NAME partially reversed the expected caerulein induced suppression of amylase output. This effect was reproduced by indazole and capsaicin. Indazole did not alter responses to either optimal (0.25 microg/kg) or suboptimal (0.1 microg/kg) caerulein, nor, in contrast with L-NAME, aggravate the outcome of caerulein induced pancreatitis. CONCLUSIONS: Reduction of circulating NO availability, probably of endothelial origin, is responsible for the decrease in amylase secretion observed in the early response to L-NAME. Nitrergic neurotransmission plays an important role in the control of pancreatic secretion and may induce opposite effects to endothelial NOS activity.
Project description:There is no clinical treatment that reduces acinar injury during pancreatitis. Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) protease inhibitors (PI), including nelfinavir (NFV) and ritonavir (RTV), may reduce the rate of pancreatitis in HIV-infected patients. Since permeability transition pore (PTPC)-mediated mitochondrial dysfunction occurs during pancreatitis, and we have shown that PI prevents PTPC opening, we studied its effects in a model of pancreatitis. The effect of NFV plus RTV (NFV/RTV) or vehicle on caerulein-induced pancreatitis in mice was compared by measuring changes in mitochondrial membrane potential in vitro and cytochrome c leakage in vivo. Histological and inflammatory makers were also compared. NFV/RTV improved DiOC6 retention in acini exposed to caerulein in vitro. In vivo NFV prevented cytosolic leakage of cytochrome c and reduced pancreatic acinar injury, active caspase-3 staining, TUNEL-positive acinar cells, and serum amylase (P < 0.05). Conversely, trypsin activity, serum cytokine levels, and pancreatic and lung inflammation were unaffected. NFV/RTV reduces pancreatic injury and acinar cell death in experimental mouse caerulein-induced pancreatitis but does not impact inflammation.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Ectopic protease activation, microcirculatory changes, and leucocyte activation are the main events in the pathogenesis of acute pancreatitis. Nitric oxide (NO) is known to be a key mediator in the normal and inflamed pancreas. AIMS: To investigate the targets on which NO exerts its effect in caerulein induced pancreatitis. METHODS: Acute pancreatitis was induced in rats which additionally received either the NO synthase substrate, L-arginine; the NO donor, sodium nitroprusside; or the NO synthase inhibitor, N-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME). At six hours, pancreatic injury (oedema, leucocyte content, ectopic trypsinogen activation) was analysed and pancreatic oxygenation and perfusion were determined. A direct influence of NO on amylase secretion and trypsinogen activation was evaluated separately in vitro. RESULTS: Both NO donors reduced the grade of inflammation. L-NAME increased the severity of inflammation, while decreasing pancreatic tissue oxygenation. Although neither amylase secretion nor intracellular trypsinogen activation in caerulein stimulated pancreatic acini was influenced by either NO donors or inhibitors, both NO donors decreased intrapancreatic trypsinogen activation peptide (TAP) and pancreatic oedema in vivo, and L-NAME increased TAP. CONCLUSIONS: NO protects against injury caused by pancreatitis in the intact animal but has no discernible effect on isolated acini. It is likely that in pancreatitis NO acts indirectly via microcirculatory changes, including inhibition of leucocyte activation and preservation of capillary perfusion.
Project description:BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE:Acute pancreatitis (AP) is a common acute abdominal condition, frequently associated with intestinal barrier dysfunction, which aggravates AP retroactively. Butyrate exhibits anti-inflammatory effects in a variety of inflammatory diseases. However, its potential beneficial effect on AP and the underlying mechanisms have not been investigated. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH:Experimental AP was induced by caerulein hyperstimulation in wild-type and GPR109A<sup>-/-</sup> mice. Sodium butyrate was administered intragastrically for 7 days prior to caerulein hyperstimulation. Anti-inflammatory mechanisms of butyrate were further investigated in peritoneal macrophages. KEY RESULTS:Butyrate prophylaxis attenuated AP as shown by reduced serum amylase and lipase levels, pancreatic oedema, myeloperoxidase activity, and improved pancreatic morphology. Amelioration of pancreatic damage by butyrate was associated with reduced levels of TNF-?, IL-6, and CCL2 and suppressed activation of the NLRP3 inflammasome in both pancreas and colon. Further, butyrate ameliorated pancreatic inflammation by suppressing interactions between histone deacetylase 1 (HDAC1) and AP1 and STAT1 with increased histone acetylation at H3K9, H3K14, H3K18, and H3K27 loci, resulting in suppression of NLRP3 inflammasome activation and modulation of immune cell infiltration in pancreas. Additionally, butyrate mediated STAT1/AP1-NLRP3 inflammasome suppression via HDAC1 inhibition was demonstrated in peritoneal macrophage. In colon, butyrate inhibited NLRP3 inflammasome activation via GPR109A. Accordingly, the modulatory effects of butyrate on AP, AP-associated gut dysfunction, and NLRP3 inflammasome activation were diminished in GPR109A<sup>-/-</sup> mice. CONCLUSION AND IMPLICATIONS:Our study dissected tissue-specific anti-inflammatory mechanisms of butyrate during AP, suggesting that increased colonic levels of butyrate may be a strategy to protect against AP.
Project description:AIM:To examine the influence of dexamethasone on pancreatitis-associated protein (PAP) gene expression using both in vitro and in vivo models of acute pancreatitis and to study how PAP gene expression correlates with severity of pancreatitis. METHODS:In vitro, IL-6 stimulated pancreas acinar AR42J cells were cultured with increasing concentrations of dexamethasone and assayed for PAP expression (RT-PCR). In vivo, pancreatitis was induced in rats by retrograde injection of 40 g/L taurocholate into the pancreatic duct. Animals were pretreated with dexamethasone (2 mg/kg) daily or saline for 4 d. Pancreata and serum were harvested after 24 h and gene expression levels of PAP I, II and III were measured by RT-PCR. Severity of pancreatitis was based on serum amylase, pancreatic wet weight, and histopathological score. RESULTS:In vitro, dexamethasone and IL-6 induced a marked transcription of PAP I, II and III genes in AR42J cells at 24 h (P < 0.05 for all comparisons). In vivo, pancreas mRNA levels of PAP I, II or III increased by 2.6-fold, 1.9-fold, and 1.3-fold respectively after dexamethasone treatment, compared with saline treated animals. Serum amylase levels and edema were significantly lower in the dexamethasone group compared with the saline group. Histopathologic evaluation revealed less inflammation and necrosis in pancreata obtained from dexamethasone treated animals (P < 0.05). CONCLUSION:Dexamethasone significantly decreases the severity of pancreatitis. The protective mechanism of dexamethasone may be via upregulating PAP gene expression during injury.
Project description:Differentiating pancreatitis from pancreatic cancer would improve diagnostic specificity, and prognosticating pancreatitis that progresses to pancreatic cancer would also improve diagnoses of pancreas pathology. The high glycolytic metabolism of pancreatic cancer can cause tumor acidosis, and different levels of pancreatitis may also have different levels of acidosis, so that extracellular acidosis may be a diagnostic biomarker for these pathologies. AcidoCEST MRI can noninvasively measure extracellular pH (pHe) in the pancreas and pancreatic tissue. We used acidoCEST MRI to measure pHe in a KC model treated with caerulein, which causes pancreatitis followed by development of pancreatic cancer. We also evaluated the KC model treated with PBS, and wild-type mice treated with caerulein or PBS as controls. The caerulein-treated KC cohort had lower pHe of 6.85-6.92 before and during the first 48?h after initiating treatment, relative to a pHe of 6.92 to 7.05 pHe units for the other cohorts. The pHe of the caerulein-treated KC cohort decreased to 6.79 units at 5?weeks when pancreatic tumors were detected with anatomical MRI, and sustained a pHe of 6.75 units at the 8-week time point. Histopathology was used to evaluate and validate the presence of tumors and inflammation in each cohort. These results showed that acidoCEST MRI can differentiate pancreatic cancer from pancreatitis in this mouse model, but does not appear to differentiate pancreatitis that progresses to pancreatic cancer vs. pancreatitis that does not progress to cancer.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Pancreatitis-associated protein (PAP) is a secretory protein not normally expressed in healthy pancreas but highly induced during acute pancreatitis. While PAP has been shown to be anti-bacterial and anti-apoptotic in vitro, its definitive biological function in vivo is not clear. METHODS:To elucidate the function of PAP, antisense oligodeoxyribonucleotides (AS-PAP) targeting all three isoforms of PAP were administered via intrapancreatic injections (5 mg kg day, 2 days) to rats prior to induction of pancreatitis. RESULTS:Severity of pancreatitis and cytokine gene expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) were evaluated. Administration of AS-PAP, but not the scrambled oligodeoxyribonucleotide (SC-PAP) control, reduced pancreatitis-induced PAP expression by 55.2 +/- 6.4%, 44.0 +/- 8.9%, and 38.9 +/- 10.7% for PAP isoforms I, II, and III, respectively, compared to saline-treated controls (P < 0.05 for all). Inhibition of PAP expression significantly worsened pancreatitis: serum amylase activity, pancreas wet weight (reflecting edema), and serum C-reactive protein levels all increased in AS-PAP-treated animals compared to SC-PAP-treated controls (by 3.5-, 1.7-, and 1.7-fold, respectively; P < 0.05 for all). Histopathologic evaluation of pancreas revealed worsened edema, elevated leukocyte infiltration, and fat necrosis after AS-PAP treatment. Gene expressions of IL-1 microm and IL-4 were significantly higher in PBMC isolated from AS-PAP-treated rats compared to SC-PAP controls. CONCLUSION:This is the first in vivo evidence indicating that PAP mediates significant protection against pancreatic injury. Our data suggest that PAP may exert its protective function by suppressing local pancreatic as well as systemic inflammation during acute pancreatitis.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The biological function of the Reg protein, a non-enzymic protein produced in fairly large amounts by pancreatic acinar cells, remains elusive. Its susceptibility to proteolysis leading to precipitation of the proteolysis product at neutral pH suggests that it could contribute to the protein plugging observed in cystic fibrosis (CF). AIMS: To study its behaviour in the serum of CF patients with or without pancreatic insufficiency and to compare it with that of other pancreatic secretory proteins. PATIENTS: 170 patients (93 with CF, 55 controls, and 22 with chronic pancreatitis) were studied. METHODS: Reg protein was measured using a specific enzyme immunoassay and its molecular form in CF sera was characterised by gel filtration. Molecular gene expression was investigated by dot-blot hybridisation. RESULTS: Reg protein was present in all CF sera studied from patients with or without pancreatic insufficiency, and in all cases the level was significantly higher than in controls. Its chromatographic behaviour in CF sera was identical with that of the protein present in normal serum. No correlation was found between the levels of Reg protein and trypsin(ogen) (or lipase) in CF, nor in control sera or normal pancreatic juice. Molecular gene expression of the corresponding proteins investigated in pancreatic tissues showed an absence of correlation between the mRNA levels. CONCLUSIONS: Reg protein may not be a secretory exocrine protein like the digestive enzymes but rather a hormone-like secretory substance with an endocrine or paracrine function.
Project description:Hemin upregulates heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), a stress-induced enzyme implicated in protection from a variety of injuries while its related isoform HO-2 is constitutively expressed. The role of hemin or HO-1 in the pancreas and their potential modulation of pancreatic injury are unknown. We show that HO-1 is induced in pancreatitis caused by caerulein and more prominently in severe pancreatitis caused by feeding a choline-deficient diet (CDD). Intraperitoneal hemin administration dramatically increases peritoneal and pancreas macrophages that overexpress HO-1 in association with pancreatic induction of the chemoattractants monocyte chemotactic protein-1 and macrophage inflammatory protein-1alpha but not RANTES or macrophage inflammatory protein-2. Hemin administration before CDD feeding protected 8 of 8 mice from lethality while 7 of 16 controls died. Protection is mediated by HO-1-overexpressing macrophages since hemin-primed macrophages home to the pancreas after transfer to naive mice and protect from CDD-induced pancreatitis. Suppression of hemin-primed peritoneal cell HO-1 using HO-1-specific small interfering RNA prior to cell transfer abolishes protection from CDD-induced pancreatitis. Similarly, hemin pretreatment in caerulein-induced pancreatitis reduces serum amylase and lipase, decreases pancreatic trypsin generation, and protects from lung injury. Therefore, hemin-like compounds or hemin-activated macrophages may offer novel therapeutic approaches for preventing acute pancreatitis and its pulmonary complication via upregulation of HO-1.