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, 179 (2), 901-9

Urotensin II Is a New Chemotactic Factor for UT Receptor-Expressing Monocytes

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Urotensin II Is a New Chemotactic Factor for UT Receptor-Expressing Monocytes

Jean-Pierre Segain et al. J Immunol.

Abstract

Urotensin II (U-II), a vasoactive cyclic neuropeptide which activates the G protein-coupled receptor UT receptor, exerts various cardiovascular effects and may play a role in the pathophysiology of atherosclerosis. In this study, we report that the UT receptor is expressed and functional on human PBMC and rat splenocytes. PBMC surface expression of the UT receptor was mainly found in monocytes and NK cells, also in a minority of B cells, but not in T cells. Stimulation of monocytes with LPS increased UT receptor mRNA and protein expression. Cloning and functional characterization of the human UT receptor gene promoter revealed the presence of NF-kappaB-binding sites involved in the stimulation of UT receptor gene expression by LPS. Activation of the UT receptor by U-II induced chemotaxis with maximal activity at 10 and 100 nM. This U-II effect was restricted to monocytes. Analysis of the signaling pathway involved indicated that U-II-mediated chemotaxis was related to RhoA and Rho kinase activation and actin cytoskeleton reorganization. The present results thus identify U-II as a chemoattractant for UT receptor-expressing monocytes and indicate a pivotal role of the RhoA-Rho kinase signaling cascade in the chemotaxis induced by U-II.

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