IL-1β promotes A549 cell migration via MAPKs/AP-1- and NF-κB-dependent matrix metalloproteinase-9 expression

Chih Chung Lin, Chang Ting Kuo, Ching Yi Cheng, Cheng Ying Wu, Chiang Wen Lee, Hsi Lung Hsieh, I-Ta Lee, Chuen Mao Yang

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Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), in particular MMP-9, is induced by cytokines including IL-1β and contributes to airway injury and remodeling. However, the mechanisms underlying IL-1β-induced MMP-9 expression and cell migration in human A549 cells remain unclear. Here, we report that the IL-1β-induced MMP-9 gene expression was mediated through the activation of p42/p44 MAPK, p38 MAPK, and JNK1/2 in A549 cells, determined by zymographic, RT-PCR, and Western blotting. The involvement of MAPKs in the IL-1β-induced responses was further ensured by transfection with siRNA of MEK1, p42, p38, or JNK2. Moreover, the IL-1β-induced MMP-9 gene expression was also mediated through the translocation of NF-κB (p65) into the nucleus and the degradation of IκBα. In addition, the IL-1β-induced c-Jun phosphorylation was reduced by pretreatment with U0126 or SP600125. IL-1β stimulated the transcriptional activity of wild-type MMP-9 promoter in A549 cells, which was inhibited by U0126, SB203580, SP600125, and helenalin. In contrast, IL-1β had no effect on the cells transfected with a NF-κB-mutated MMP-9 promoter construct, suggesting that NF-κB is required for this response. Finally, the IL-1β-induced MMP-9 expression led to cell migration which was attenuated by pretreatment with U0126, SB203580, SP600125, helenalin, or MMP-2/9 inhibitor. These results suggested that in A549 cells, the activation of p42/p44 MAPK, p38 MAPK, JNK1/2, NF-κB, and AP-1 are essential for the IL-1β-induced MMP-9 gene expression and cell migration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1652-1662
Number of pages11
JournalCellular Signalling
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2009
Externally publishedYes



  • Cytokines
  • Matrix metalloproteinases
  • Mitogen-activated protein kinases
  • Pulmonary epithelial cells
  • Transcription factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology

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