Induction of ferritin and heme oxygenase-1 by endotoxin in the lung

Published

Journal Article

Heine oxygenase (HO)-1 expression is increased by forms of oxidative stress that also induce ferritin. Even though this could result from release of iron by heme degradation, we hypothesized that ferritin expression in the lung after endotoxin [lipopolysaccharide (LPS)] would occur independently of HO-1 because iron sequestration is an important response to infection. We tested this hypothesis by instilling saline or LPS (1 mg) into lungs of rats and measuring ferritin expression, HO-1 expression and activity, and HO-1 and ferritin mRNAs at different times. Lungs were also inflation fixed for immunohistochemistry for HO-1 and ferritin. Studies were performed with and without the HO inhibitor tin protoporphyrin. Ferritin and HO-1 labeling were minimal (macrophages only) in control lungs. By 4 h after LPS instillation, ferritin staining was present in bronchial epithelium and macrophages, became diffuse at 16 h, and was nearly gone by 48-72 h. HO-1 was detectable in macrophages 4 and 16 h after LPS instillation, increased in macrophages and bronchial epithelium at 24 h, and diffusely increased in bronchial epithelium and the alveolar region at 48-72 h. Lung ferritin content increased significantly by 4 h and peaked at 16 h before declining. HO-1 protein was present by Western blot in control lung, stable at 4 h, and increased by 24 h after LPS instillation, whereas HO enzyme activity had increased by 4 h after LPS instillation. After complete inhibition of HO enzyme activity with tin protoporphyrin, ferritin increased threefold at 4 h and sixfold at 24 h after LPS instillation. HO-1 mRNA increased by 4 h and was sustained at 24 h, whereas ferritin mRNA did not change after LPS instillation. These results indicate that intratracheal LPS rapidly induces ferritin protein in the lung independently of its mRNA synthesis or HO enzyme activity. LPS induces HO-1 mRNA, which is followed by increased expression of protein.

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Carraway, MS; Ghio, AJ; Taylor, JL; Piantadosi, CA

Published Date

  • September 1, 1998

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 275 / 3 19-3

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1040-0605

Citation Source

  • Scopus