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Elizabeth A. Berger, Sharon A. McClellan, Ronald P. Barrett, Linda D. Hazlett; Testican-1 Promotes Resistance against Pseudomonas aeruginosa–Induced Keratitis through Regulation of MMP-2 Expression and Activation. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2011;52(8):5339-5346. doi: 10.1167/iovs.10-6920.
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Testican-1 (or SPOCK) is a highly conserved chimeric proteoglycan encoded by the SPOCK1 gene. Protease regulatory activity has recently been demonstrated by this molecule and its family members testican-2 and -3. The present study tested the hypothesis that testican-1 regulates corneal matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2 expression, thus improving disease outcome after Pseudomonas aeruginosa–induced keratitis.
C57BL/6 (B6) and BALB/c mice were routinely infected with P. aeruginosa and were evaluated at various postinfection (pi) times for corneal expression of testican-1 and MMP-2, by PCR array, real-time RT-PCR, ELISA, activity assays, zymography, and immunohistochemistry. Next, B6 mice were treated with recombinant human (rh) testican-1, and expression was knocked down in BALB/c ice by siTestican-1 treatment, to determine the relationship between the two molecules.
BALB/c versus B6 mice expressed significantly higher mRNA and protein levels of testican-1 after P. aeruginosa-induced ocular infection. MMP-2 expression and activation was also disparate between the two mouse strains. After rhTestican-1 treatment in B6 mice, overall disease response was significantly improved, whereas siRNA treatment of BALB/c mice converted the normally resistant response to susceptible. Testican-1 was shown to influence MMP-2 expression, activation, and regulation, as well.
This study demonstrates corneal expression of testican-1 and its temporal regulation of MMP-2 expression and activation after induction of bacterial keratitis. Furthermore, the data collectively indicate that testican-1 is a novel target for disease treatment to promote better disease outcome regarding chronic inflammation and infection and diseases involving pathologic tissue destruction.
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