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Dickkopf proteins influence lung epithelial cell proliferation in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.
Eur. Respir. J. 37, 79-87 (2011)
Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a fatal interstitial lung disease with unknown pathogenesis. The WNT/β-catenin pathway has recently been reported to be operative in epithelial cells in IPF. Dickkopf (DKK) proteins are known to regulate WNT signalling via interaction with Kremen (KRM) receptors, yet their expression and role in the adult lung and in IPF has not been addressed. We analysed the expression, localisation and function of DKK and KRM proteins in IPF lungs using Western blotting, quantitative RT-PCR, immunohistochemistry, ELISA and functional in vitro studies. Enhanced expression of DKK1 and DKK4 and KRM1 was detected in lung homogenates of IPF patients compared with transplant donors. Immunohistochemistry revealed that DKK1 was predominantly localised in basal bronchial epithelial cells. Furthermore, prominent expression of all proteins was observed in hyperplastic alveolar epithelial cells in IPF. Quantitative measurement of DKK1 revealed enhanced protein expression in the bronchoalveolar lumen of IPF patients. Finally, functional studies using human bronchial and alveolar epithelial cell lines demonstrated that WNT-induced epithelial cell proliferation is regulated by DKK1 in a dose-dependent fashion. In summary, DKK proteins are expressed in the lung epithelium in IPF. DKK proteins influence epithelial cell proliferation and may, therefore, be suitable therapeutic targets for IPF.
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Publikationstyp Artikel: Journalartikel
Dokumenttyp Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
Schlagwörter Dickkopf proteins; lung epithelial cells; pulmonary fibrosis; WNT signalling
ISSN (print) / ISBN 0903-1936
Zeitschrift European Respiratory Journal
Quellenangaben Band: 37, Heft: 1, Seiten: 79-87
Verlag European Respiratory Society
Begutachtungsstatus Peer reviewed
Institut(e) Comprehensive Pneumology Center (CPC)