Expression and release of interleukin-8 by human airway smooth muscle cells: inhibition by Th-2 cytokines and corticosteroids

Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol. 1998 Jan;18(1):84-90. doi: 10.1165/ajrcmb.18.1.2813.


Interleukin (IL)-8 is a C-X-C chemokine that potently chemoattracts and activates neutrophils. We determined whether IL-8 could be produced by human airway smooth muscle cells in culture and examined its regulation. TNF-alpha stimulated IL-8 mRNA expression and protein release in a time- and dose-dependent manner, whereas IFN-gamma alone had no effect. Both cytokines together did not induce greater IL-8 release compared to TNF-alpha alone. IL-1beta was more potent in inducing IL-8 release and, together with TNF-alpha, there was a synergistic augmentation of IL-8 release. IL-8 release induced by TNF-alpha and IFN-gamma was partly inhibited by the Th-2-derived cytokines IL-4, IL-10, and IL-13, as well as by dexamethasone. In addition to its contractile responses, airway smooth muscle cells have synthetic and secretory potential with the release of IL-8 and subsequent recruitment and activation of neutrophils in the airways. Release of IL-8 can be modulated by Th-2-derived cytokines and corticosteroids.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / pharmacology*
  • Bronchi / metabolism*
  • Bronchial Neoplasms
  • Cytokines / pharmacology*
  • Female
  • Gene Expression / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Interferon-gamma / pharmacology
  • Interleukin-1 / pharmacology
  • Interleukin-10 / pharmacology
  • Interleukin-13 / pharmacology
  • Interleukin-4 / pharmacology
  • Interleukin-8 / genetics*
  • Interleukin-8 / metabolism*
  • Kinetics
  • Male
  • Muscle, Smooth / metabolism*
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer / metabolism
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / pharmacology


  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones
  • Cytokines
  • Interleukin-1
  • Interleukin-13
  • Interleukin-8
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Interleukin-10
  • Interleukin-4
  • Interferon-gamma