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Jose-Andres C. Portillo, Isaac Schwartz, Simona Zarini, Reena Bapputty, Timothy S. Kern, Rose A. Gubitosi-Klug, Robert C. Murphy, M. Cecilia Subauste, Carlos S. Subauste; Proinflammatory Responses Induced by CD40 in Retinal Endothelial and Müller Cells are Inhibited by Blocking CD40-Traf2,3 or CD40-Traf6 Signaling. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2014;55(12):8590-8597. doi: 10.1167/iovs.14-15340.
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The cell surface receptor CD40 is required for the development of retinopathies induced by diabetes and ischemia/reperfusion. The purpose of this study was to identify signaling pathways by which CD40 triggers proinflammatory responses in retinal cells, since this may lead to pharmacologic targeting of these pathways as novel therapy against retinopathies.
Retinal endothelial and Müller cells were transduced with vectors that encode wild-type CD40 or CD40 with mutations in sites that recruit TNF receptor associated factors (TRAF): TRAF2,3 (ΔT2,3), TRAF6 (ΔT6), or TRAF2,3 plus TRAF6 (ΔT2,3,6). Cells also were incubated with CD40-TRAF2,3 or CD40-TRAF6 blocking peptides. We assessed intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1), CD40, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1), VEGF, and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) by fluorescence-activated cell sorting (FACS), ELISA, or mass spectrometry. Mice (B6 and CD40−/−) were made diabetic using streptozotocin. The MCP-1 mRNA was assessed by real-time PCR.
The CD40-mediated ICAM-1 upregulation in endothelial and Müller cells was markedly inhibited by expression of CD40 ΔT2,3 or CD40 ΔT6. The CD40 was required for MCP-1 mRNA upregulation in the retina of diabetic mice. The CD40 stimulation of endothelial and Müller cells enhanced MCP-1 production that was markedly diminished by CD40 ΔT2,3 or CD40 ΔT6. Similar results were obtained in cells incubated with CD40-TRAF2,3 or CD40-TRAF6 blocking peptides. The CD40 ligation upregulated PGE2 and VEGF production by Müller cells, that was inhibited by CD40 ΔT2,3 or CD40 ΔT6. All cellular responses tested were obliterated by expression of CD40 ΔT2,3,6.
Blockade of a single CD40-TRAF pathway was sufficient to impair ICAM-1, MCP-1, PGE2, and VEGF upregulation in retinal endothelial and/or Müller cells. Blockade of CD40-TRAF signaling may control retinopathies.
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