Oxidized lipids play a critical role in a variety of diseases with two faces: pro- and anti-inflammatory. The molecular mechanisms of this Janus-faced activity remain largely unknown. Here, we have identified that cyclopentenone-containing prostaglandins such as 15d-PGJ2 and structurally related oxidized phospholipid species possess a dual and opposing bioactivity in inflammation, depending on their concentration. Exposure of dendritic cells (DCs)/macrophages to low concentrations of such lipids before Toll-like receptor (TLR) stimulation instigates an anti-inflammatory response mediated by nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2)-dependent inhibition of nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) activation and downstream targets. By contrast, high concentrations of such lipids upon TLR activation of DCs/macrophages result in inflammatory apoptosis characterized by mitochondrial depolarization and caspase-8-mediated interleukin (IL)-1β maturation independently of Nrf2 and the classical inflammasome pathway. These results uncover unexpected pro- and anti-inflammatory activities of physiologically relevant lipid species generated by enzymatic and non-enzymatic oxidation dependent on their concentration, a phenomenon known as hormesis.
Keywords: 15d-PGJ2; IL-1β; Nrf2; OXPHOS; caspase-8; cyclopentenone prostaglandins; dendritic cells; inflammatory apoptosis; macrophages; oxidized phospholipids.
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