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Keywords:

  • apolipoprotein A1;
  • asthma;
  • lipoxin A4;
  • lung;
  • tight junction

Summary

Background

Asthma is characterized by chronic airway inflammation triggered by various allergens in the environment. Defects in the bronchial epithelial interface with the external environment are the hallmark of asthma. Apolipoprotein A-1 (ApoA1) or ApoA1 mimetics have demonstrated anti-inflammatory activity and preventive effects in mouse models.

Objective

We investigated airway levels of ApoA1 in asthmatics and the possible role of ApoA1 in protection of the bronchial epithelium and in resolution of inflammation in cellular and animal models of asthma.

Methods

ApoA1 levels were measured in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) from asthmatics and healthy controls. With treatment of ApoA1, mouse model of house dust mite (HDM)-driven asthma and cultured primary bronchial epithelial cells obtained from asthmatics were examined. Tight junction (TJ) expression in the bronchial epithelial cells was assessed by using confocal microscopy and immunoblot.

Results

Asthmatics showed significantly lower ApoA1 levels in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid than did healthy controls. Local ApoA1 treatment significantly decreased lung IL-25, IL-33, and thymic stromal lymphopoietin levels in HDM-challenged mice and inhibited allergen-induced production of these cytokines in cultured primary bronchial epithelial cells. ApoA1 promoted recovery of disrupted TJ proteins zonula occludens-1 and occludin in cultured primary bronchial epithelium obtained from asthmatics. ApoA1-induced increases in the TJ proteins were dependent on increased production of lipoxin A4 (LX A4).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance

ApoA1 enhances resolution of allergen-induced airway inflammation through promoting recovery of damaged TJs in the bronchial epithelium. ApoA1 could be a therapeutic strategy in chronic airway inflammatory diseases that are associated with a defective epithelial barrier, including asthma.