Objective: Junctional adhesion molecule-C (JAM-C) is an adhesion molecule that has multiple roles in inflammation and vascular biology, but many aspects of its functions under pathological conditions are unknown. Here we investigated the role of JAM-C in leukocyte migration in response to ischemia reperfusion (I/R) injury.
Methods and results: Pretreatment of mice with soluble JAM-C (sJAM-C), used as a pharmacological blocker of JAM-C-mediated reactions, significantly suppressed leukocyte migration in models of kidney and cremaster muscle I/R injury (39 and 51% inhibition, respectively). Furthermore, in the cremaster muscle model (studied by intravital microscopy), both leukocyte adhesion and transmigration were suppressed in JAM-C-deficient mice (JAM-C(-/-)) and enhanced in mice overexpressing JAM-C in their endothelial cells (ECs). Analysis of JAM-C subcellular expression by immunoelectron microscopy indicated that in I/R-injured tissues, EC JAM-C was redistributed from cytoplasmic vesicles and EC junctional sites to nonjunctional plasma membranes, a response that may account for the role of JAM-C in both leukocyte adhesion and transmigration under conditions of I/R injury.
Conclusions: The findings demonstrate a role for EC JAM-C in mediating leukocyte adhesion and transmigration in response to I/R injury and indicate the existence of a novel regulatory mechanism for redistribution and hence function of EC JAM-C in vivo.