Dual Oxidase 2 (Duox2) Regulates Pannexin 1-mediated ATP Release in Primary Human Airway Epithelial Cells via Changes in Intracellular pH and Not H2O2 Production

Academic Article


  • Human airway epithelial cells express pannexin 1 (Panx1) channels to release ATP, which regulates mucociliary clearance. Airway inflammation causes mucociliary dysfunction. Exposure of primary human airway epithelial cell cultures to IFN-γ for 48 h did not alter Panx1 protein expression but significantly decreasedATPrelease in response to hypotonic stress. The IFN- γ-induced functional down-regulation of Panx1 was due to the up-regulation of dual oxidase 2 (Duox2). Duox2 suppression by siRNA led to an increase in ATP release in control cells and restoration of ATP release in cells treated with IFN-γ. Both effects were reduced by the pannexin inhibitor probenecid. Duox2 up-regulation stoichiometrically increases H2O2 and proton production. H2O2 inhibited Panx1 function temporarily by formation of disulfide bonds at the thiol group of its terminal cysteine. Long-term exposure to H2O2, however, had no inhibitory effect. To assess the role of cellular acidification upon IFN-γ treatment, fully differentiated airway epithelial cells were exposed to ammonium chloride to alkalinize the cytosol. This led to a 2-fold increase inATPrelease in cells treated with IFN-γ that was also inhibited by probenecid. Duox2 knockdown also partially corrected IFN-γ-mediated acidification. The direct correlation between intracellular pH and Panx1 open probability was shown in oocytes. Therefore, airway epithelial cells release less ATP in response to hypotonic stress in an inflammatory environment (IFN-γ exposure). Decreased Panx1 function is a response to cell acidification mediated by IFN-γ-induced up-regulation of Duox2, representing a novel mechanism for mucociliary dysfunction in inflammatory airway diseases.
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    Author List

  • Krick S; Wang J; St-Pierre M; Gonzalez C; Dahl G; Salathe M
  • Start Page

  • 6423
  • End Page

  • 6432
  • Volume

  • 291
  • Issue

  • 12