The role of plasminogen activator inhibitor type 1 in the inflammatory response to local tissue injury


Rosemarijn Renckens MD, Laboratory of Experimental Internal Medicine, Academic Medical Center, Room G2-132, Meibergdreef 9, 1105 AZ Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Fax: +31 20 6977192; e-mail:


Summary. Background: The plasma levels of the plasminogen activator-inhibitor type 1 (PAI-1) are consistently elevated in patients with sterile tissue injury, often accompanied by a systemic acute phase protein response. It remains unknown, however, whether and to what extent PAI-1 affects the host response to trauma. Methods and results: By using the well-established murine model of turpentine-induced tissue injury we compared local and systemic inflammatory responses in PAI-1 gene-deficient (PAI-1–/–) and normal wild-type (Wt) mice. Subcutaneous turpentine injection elicited strong increases in PAI-1 protein concentration in plasma and at the site of injury, but not in liver. PAI-1 mRNA was locally increased and expressed mainly by macrophages and endothelial cells. PAI-1 deficiency greatly enhanced the early influx of neutrophils to the site of inflammation, which was associated with increased edema and necrosis at 8 h after injection. Furthermore, PAI-1–/– mice showed a reduced early interleukin (IL)-6 induction with subsequently lower acute phase protein levels and a much slower recovery of body weight loss. Conclusion: These findings suggest that PAI-1 is not merely a marker of tissue injury but plays a functional role in the local and systemic host response to trauma.