Free Access
Vet. Res.
Volume 41, Number 2, March–April 2010
Number of page(s) 10
Published online 29 October 2009
How to cite this article Vet. Res. (2010) 41:18
How to cite this article: Vet. Res. (2010) 41:18
DOI: 10.1051/vetres/2009066

Characterization of pentraxin 3 in the horse and its expression in airways

Eve Ramery, Laurence Fievez, Audrey Fraipont, Fabrice Bureau and Pierre Lekeux

Department for Functional Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Liege, Bvd de Colonster, 20, B-4000 Liege, Belgium

Received 5 May 2009; accepted 28 October 2009; published online 29 October 2009

Abstract - The long pentraxin 3 (PTX3) plays an important role in host defence and its over-expression may contribute to airway injury. The aim of the present study was therefore to characterize in more detail PTX3 and its expression in the horses' airway. Six healthy horses and six horses affected by recurrent airway obstruction (R.A.O.) were submitted to a dusty environment challenge. PTX3 DNA and cDNA were cloned and sequenced. PTX3 expression was evaluated by RT-qPCR, Western blotting and immunohistochemistry in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) cells, BALF supernatant and bronchial epithelial cells. An alternative splicing of the second exon of PTX3 occurred, resulting in two forms of the protein: “spliced” (32 kDa) and “full length” (42 kDa). PTX3 was detected in BALF macrophages, neutrophils and bronchial epithelial cells. It was over-expressed in the BALF supernatant from R.A.O.-affected horses in crisis. However, dust was unable to induce PTX3 in BALF cells ex vivo, indicating that dust is an indirect inducer of PTX3. Dust exposure in-vivo induced PTX3 in BALF macrophages but there was no significant difference between healthy and R.A.O.-affected horses. Conversely, PTX3 was over-expressed in the bronchial epithelial cells from R.A.O.-affected horses in crisis. These data indicate a differential regulatory mechanism in inflammatory and bronchial epithelial cells and offer therapeutically interesting perspectives.

Key words: PTX3 / horse / airway / inflammation

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© INRA, EDP Sciences 2009