Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) selectively stimulates proliferation and differentiation of neutrophil progenitors which play important roles in host defense against infectious agents. However, persistent G-CSF production often leads to neutrophilia and excessive inflammatory reactions. There is therefore a need to understand the mechanism regulating G-CSF expression. In this study, we showed that U0126, a MEK1/2 inhibitor, decreases lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated G-CSF promoter activity, mRNA expression and protein secretion. Using short hairpin RNA knockdown, we demonstrated that ERK2, and not ERK1, involves in LPS-induced G-CSF expression, but not LPS-regulated expression of TNF-α. Reporter assays showed that ERK2 and C/EBPβ synergistically activate G-CSF promoter activity. Further chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assays revealed that U0126 inhibits LPS-induced binding of NF-κB (p50/p65) and C/EBPβ to the G-CSF promoter, but not their nuclear protein levels. Knockdown of ERK2 inhibits LPS-induced accessibility of the G-CSF promoter region to DNase I, suggesting that chromatin remodeling may occur. These findings clarify that ERK2, rather than ERK1, mediates LPS-induced G-CSF expression in macrophages by remodeling chromatin, and stimulates C/ EBPβ-dependent activation of the G-CSF promoter. This study provides a potential target for regulating G-CSF expression.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)