School of Medicine Publications and Presentations

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Sustained inflammation and matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) activation contribute to vascular occlusive/proliferative disorders. Interleukin-17 (IL-17) is a proinflammatory cytokine that signals mainly via TRAF3 Interacting Protein 2 (TRAF3IP2), an upstream regulator of various critical transcription factors, including AP-1 and NF-κB. Reversion inducing cysteine rich protein with kazal motifs (RECK) is a membrane-anchored MMP inhibitor. Here we investigated whether IL-17A/TRAF3IP2 signaling promotes MMP-13-dependent human aortic smooth muscle cell (SMC) proliferation and migration, and determined whether RECK overexpression blunts these responses. Indeed, IL-17A treatment induced (a) JNK, p38 MAPK, AP-1, NF-κB, and CREB activation, (b) miR-21 induction, (c) miR-27b and miR-320 inhibition, (d) MMP-13 expression and activation, (e) RECK suppression, and (f) SMC migration and proliferation, all in a TRAF3IP2-dependent manner. In fact, gain of TRAG3IP2 function, by itself, induced MMP-13 expression and activation, and RECK suppression. Furthermore, treatment with recombinant MMP-13 stimulated SMC migration in part via ERK activation. Importantly, RECK gain-of-function attenuated MMP-13 activity without affecting its mRNA or protein levels, and inhibited IL-17A- and MMP-13-induced SMC migration. These results indicate that increased MMP-13 and decreased RECK contribute to IL-17A-induced TRAF3IP2-dependent SMC migration and proliferation, and suggest that TRAF3IP2 inhibitors or RECK inducers have the potential to block the progression of neointimal thickening in hyperplastic vascular diseases.


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Journal of cellular physiology



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Mentor/PI Department

Office of Human Genetics



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