The mitogen activated protein kinases ERK1/2 play an important role in response to toll like receptor (TLR) activation and cytokine production, including IL-10 and IL-12. Here, we examined the role of MEK1 in ERK1/2 activation in response to TLR4 agonist by using bone marrow-derived macrophages (BMDMs) from wild type (WT) and Mek1d/dSox2Cre mice. Our data demonstrates that MEK1 is essential for ERK1/2 activation in response to LPS. Furthermore, stimulation of the TLR4 receptor of BMDMs derived from Mek1d/dSox2Cre mice showed enhanced STAT4 phosphorylation and increased IL-12 secretion, but exhibited a significantly lower IL-10 production as compared to WT macrophages. Most interestingly, TLR ligation in the presence of recombinant IL-10 (rIL-10) or retinoic acid (RA) led to ERK1/2 activation independent of MEK1 in BMDMs derived from Mek1d/dSox2Cre mice and led to inhibition of STAT4 and decreased IL-12 levels. Collectively, these data suggest that MEK1 is required for TLR4 mediated ERK activation and in turn regulates the production of IL-10 and IL-12. It also indicates that ERK1/2 can be activated independent of MEK1 in the presence of IL-10 and RA and this activation negatively regulates IL-12, but positively regulates IL-10 production. These findings may have significant implications for the development of drugs that modulate MEK1 activity in the treatment of inflammatory, autoimmune and proliferative diseases such as cancer.
|Number of pages||9|
|State||Published - Oct 1 2015|