Arachidonate 15-lipoxygenase (ALOX15) and arachidonate 15-lipoxygenase, type B (ALOX15B) catalyze the dioxygenation of polyunsaturated fatty acids and are upregulated in human alternatively activated macrophages (AAMs) induced by Th2 cytokine interleukin-4 (IL-4) and/or interleukin-13. Known primarily for roles in bioactive lipid mediator synthesis, 15-lipoxygenases (15-LOXs) have been implicated in various macrophage functions including efferocytosis and ferroptosis. Using a combination of inhibitors and siRNAs to suppress 15-LOX isoforms, we studied the role of 15-LOXs in cellular cholesterol homeostasis and immune function in naïve and AAMs. Silencing or inhibiting the 15-LOX isoforms impaired sterol regulatory element binding protein (SREBP)-2 signaling by inhibiting SREBP-2 processing into mature transcription factor and reduced SREBP-2 binding to sterol regulatory elements and subsequent target gene expression. Silencing ALOX15B reduced cellular cholesterol and the cholesterol intermediates desmosterol, lanosterol, 24,25-dihydrolanosterol, and lathosterol as well as oxysterols in IL-4-stimulated macrophages. In addition, attenuating both 15-LOX isoforms did not generally affect IL-4 gene expression but rather uniquely impacted IL-4-induced CCL17 production in an SREBP-2-dependent manner resulting in reduced T cell migration to macrophage conditioned media. In conclusion, we identified a novel role for ALOX15B, and to a lesser extent ALOX15, in cholesterol homeostasis and CCL17 production in human macrophages.
Keywords: arachidonate 15-lipoxygenase; chemokine; cholesterol; interleukin-4; lipoxygenase; macrophage; sterol regulatory element binding protein-2; type B.