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Keywords:

  • Gas6;
  • inflammation;
  • protein S;
  • TAM receptors;
  • toll-like receptor

Summary

Activation of Toll-like receptors (TLRs) triggers rapid inflammatory cytokine production in various cell types. The exogenous product of growth-arrest-specific gene 6 (Gas6) and Protein S (ProS) inhibit the TLR-triggered inflammatory responses through the activation of Tyro3, Axl and Mer (TAM) receptors. However, regulation of the Gas6/ProS-TAM system remains largely unknown. In the current study, mouse macrophages are shown to constitutively express Gas6 and ProS, which synergistically suppress the basal and TLR-triggered production of inflammatory cytokines, including those of tumour necrosis factor-α, interleukin-6 and interleukin-1β, by the macrophages in an autocrine manner. Notably, TLR signalling markedly decreases Gas6 and ProS expression in macrophages through the activation of the nuclear factor-κB. Further, the down-regulation of Gas6 and ProS by TLR signalling facilitates the TLR-mediated inflammatory cytokine production in mouse macrophages. These results describe a self-regulatory mechanism of TLR signalling through the suppression of Gas6 and ProS expression.