Chronic non-bacterial osteomyelitis (CNO) is an auto-inflammatory disorder that affects the skeletal system. Interleukin (IL-)10 is an immune-modulatory cytokine that controls inflammation, and limits inflammatory cytokine responses. Dysregulation of IL-10 expression has been shown to result in autoimmune and infectious diseases. We investigated IL-10 expression by monocytic cells from CNO patients and controls. In response to stimulation with LPS, IL-10 expression from CNO monocytes was reduced (p<0.001). This was independent of IL10 promoter polymorphisms. Thus, we investigated Sp1 recruitment to the IL10 promoter and saw markedly reduced binding in CNO monocytes. This was accompanied with reduced phosphorylation of histone H3 serine 10 (H3S10), an activating epigenetic mark. Impaired recruitment of Sp1 to the IL10 promoter, and reduced H3S10 phosphorylation, may be a reflection of deficient MAPK signaling in CNO monocytes in response to LPS stimulation. Thus, we have discovered a mechanism that may be central in the pathophysiology of CNO.
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