Antimicrobial peptide LL-37 and its pro-form, hCAP18, in desquamated epithelial cells of human whole saliva

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T1 - Antimicrobial peptide LL-37 and its pro-form, hCAP18, in desquamated epithelial cells of human whole saliva

AU - Aidoukovitch, Alexandra

AU - Dahl, Sara

AU - Fält, Felicia

AU - Nebel, Daniel

AU - Svensson, Daniel

AU - Tufvesson, Ellen

AU - Nilsson, Bengt-Olof

N1 - © 2019 Eur J Oral Sci.

PY - 2020/2

Y1 - 2020/2

N2 - The antimicrobial peptide LL-37 is active against oral bacteria and has been demonstrated to be present in human saliva, but its distribution in different fractions of saliva is not known. LL-37 is formed from its intracellular pro-form, hCAP18, in an extracellular enzymatic reaction catalyzed by proteinase 3 and kallikrein 5. Here, we prepared cell-containing and cell-free fractions of unstimulated human whole saliva by centrifugation after depolymerization of mucins with dithiothreitol, and measured the levels of hCAP18/LL-37 in these fractions using ELISA. Cellular expression of hCAP18/LL-37 was determined by western blotting and immunocytochemistry. The ELISA analyses demonstrated that both cells and cell-free saliva contained hCAP18/LL-37. Western blot analysis of cell-pellet homogenates showed a strong band corresponding to hCAP18 at the correct molecular weight and a weak band corresponding to LL-37. Phase-contrast and light microscopy revealed that the cells consisted of desquamated epithelial cells. These cells expressed cytoplasmic immunoreactivity for hCAP18/LL-37. The peripheral part of the cytoplasm, corresponding to the plasma membrane, was particularly rich in hCAP18/LL-37 immunoreactivity. No immunoreactivity was observed after omission of the primary antibody. We conclude that desquamated epithelial cells of human whole saliva contain antimicrobial hCAP18/LL-37, suggesting that these cells may take part in the innate immune system by harboring and releasing these peptides.

AB - The antimicrobial peptide LL-37 is active against oral bacteria and has been demonstrated to be present in human saliva, but its distribution in different fractions of saliva is not known. LL-37 is formed from its intracellular pro-form, hCAP18, in an extracellular enzymatic reaction catalyzed by proteinase 3 and kallikrein 5. Here, we prepared cell-containing and cell-free fractions of unstimulated human whole saliva by centrifugation after depolymerization of mucins with dithiothreitol, and measured the levels of hCAP18/LL-37 in these fractions using ELISA. Cellular expression of hCAP18/LL-37 was determined by western blotting and immunocytochemistry. The ELISA analyses demonstrated that both cells and cell-free saliva contained hCAP18/LL-37. Western blot analysis of cell-pellet homogenates showed a strong band corresponding to hCAP18 at the correct molecular weight and a weak band corresponding to LL-37. Phase-contrast and light microscopy revealed that the cells consisted of desquamated epithelial cells. These cells expressed cytoplasmic immunoreactivity for hCAP18/LL-37. The peripheral part of the cytoplasm, corresponding to the plasma membrane, was particularly rich in hCAP18/LL-37 immunoreactivity. No immunoreactivity was observed after omission of the primary antibody. We conclude that desquamated epithelial cells of human whole saliva contain antimicrobial hCAP18/LL-37, suggesting that these cells may take part in the innate immune system by harboring and releasing these peptides.

U2 - 10.1111/eos.12664

DO - 10.1111/eos.12664

M3 - Article

C2 - 31825534

VL - 128

SP - 1

EP - 6

JO - European Journal of Oral Sciences

JF - European Journal of Oral Sciences

SN - 0909-8836

IS - 1

ER -