Phospholipase A2-activating protein (PLAA) has been implicated in the production of prostaglandins (e.g. PGE2) via activation of phospholipases in various stimulated cell types. Human PLAA, with 738 amino acid (aa) residues, contains a region of 38% homology (aa 503-538) with the 26-aa long melittin peptide, a major component of bee venom and a reported regulator of phospholipase A2 and phospholipase D activity. To learn more about the role of PLAA in the production of eicosanoids and other inflammatory mediators, we synthesized a murine PLAA peptide (36-aa long) having homology to melittin, as well as to human and rat PLAA. The PLAA peptide and melittin increased the expression of genes encoding the proinflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNFα) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), which is involved in PGE2 production. We determined that the C-terminal region of the PLAA peptide (aa 515-538) was essential, since truncation of the C-terminal end of the PLAA peptide significantly reduced expression of genes encoding TNFα and COX-2 in macrophages. We concluded that PLAA could be important in the regulation of the inflammatory response because of its stimulatory effects on eicosanoid and cytokine synthesis. Consequently, control of plaa gene expression could be a target for the development of new drugs to control the inflammatory response.
- Phospholipase A-activating protein
- Tumor necrosis factor-α
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