Studies of prostaglandin E2 formationin human monocytes

University dissertation from Karlstad : Karlstad University

Abstract: Prostaglandin (PG) E2 is an eicosanoid derived from the polyunsaturated twenty carbon fatty acid arachidonic acid (AA). PGE2 has physiological as well as pathophysiological functions and is known to be a key mediator of inflammatory responses. Formation of PGE2 is dependent upon the activities of three specific enzymes involved in the AA cascade; phospholipase A2 (PLA2), cyclooxygenase (COX) and PGE synthase (PGEs). Although the research within this field has been intense for decades, the regulatory mechanisms concerning the PGE2 synthesising enzymes are not completely established.PGE2 was investigated in human monocytes with or without lipopolysaccharide (LPS) pre-treatment followed by stimulation with calcium ionophore, opsonised zymosan or phorbol myristate acetate (PMA). Cytosolic PLA2a (cPLA2a) was shown to be pivotal for the mobilization of AA and subsequent formation of PGE2. Although COX-1 was constitutively expressed, monocytes required expression of COX-2 protein in order to convert the mobilized AA into PGH2. The conversion of PGH2 to the final product PGE2 was to a large extent due to the action of microsomal PGEs-1 (mPGEs-1). In addition, experiments with inhibitors of extracellular signal regulated kinase and p38 activation, indicated that phosphorylation of cPLA2? was markedly advantageous for the formation of PGE2.Ellagic acid, a natural polyphenolic compound found in fruits and nuts, was shown to inhibit stimuli induced release of PGE2 in human monocytes. The effect of ellagic acid was not due to a direct effect on the activities of the enzymes but rather to inhibition of the LPS-induced protein expression of COX-2, mPGEs-1 and cPLA2a.