Carbon monoxide modulates alpha-smooth muscle actin and small proline rich-1a expression in fibrosis.
Disease Models, Animal
Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases
Gene Expression Profiling
MAP Kinase Signaling System
Mice, Inbred C57BL
Transforming Growth Factor beta1
Cornified Envelope Proline-Rich Proteins
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a biologically active molecule produced in the body by the stress-inducible enzyme, heme oxygenase. We have previously shown that CO suppresses fibrosis in a murine bleomycin model. To investigate the mechanisms by which CO opposes fibrogenesis, we performed gene expression profiling of fibroblasts treated with transforming growth factor-beta(1) and CO. The most highly differentially expressed categories of genes included those related to muscular system development and the small proline-rich family of proteins. We confirmed in vitro, and in an in vivo bleomycin model of lung fibrosis, that CO suppresses alpha-smooth muscle actin expression and enhances small proline-rich protein-1a expression. We further show that these effects of CO depend upon signaling via the extracellular signal-regulated kinase pathway. Our results demonstrate novel transcriptional targets for CO and further elucidate the mechanism by which CO suppresses fibrosis.