In autoimmune diseases, the accumulation of activated leukocytes correlates with inflammation and disease progression, and, therefore, the disruption of leukocyte trafficking is an active area of research. The serine/threonine protein kinase Tpl2 (MAP3K8) regulates leukocyte inflammatory responses and is also being investigated for therapeutic inhibition during autoimmunity. Here we addressed the contribution of Tpl2 to the regulation of macrophage chemokine receptor expression and migration in vivo using a mouse model of Tpl2 ablation. LPS stimulation of bone marrow-derived macrophages induced early CCR1 chemokine receptor expression but repressed CCR2 and CCR5 expression. Notably, early induction of CCR1 expression by LPS was dependent upon a signaling pathway involving Tpl2, PI3K, and ERK. On the contrary, Tpl2 was required to maintain the basal expression of CCR2 and CCR5 as well as to stabilize CCR5 mRNA expression. Consistent with impairments in chemokine receptor expression, tpl2(-/-) macrophages were defective in trafficking to the peritoneal cavity following thioglycollate-induced inflammation. Overall, this study demonstrates a Tpl2-dependent mechanism for macrophage expression of select chemokine receptors and provides further insight into how Tpl2 inhibition may be used therapeutically to disrupt inflammatory networks in vivo.
Keywords: Autoimmunity; Chemokines; Inflammation; Lipopolysaccharide (LPS); Macrophages.
© 2014 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.