Oxidised IL-33 drives COPD epithelial pathogenesis via ST2-independent RAGE/EGFR signalling complex

Sam Strickson, Kirsty F. Houslay, Victor A. Negri, Yoichiro Ohne, Tomas Ottosson, Roger B. Dodd, Catherine Chaillan Huntington, Tina Baker, Jingjing Li, Katherine E. Stephenson, Andy J. O’Connor, J. Sophie Sagawe, Helen Killick, Tom Moore, D. Gareth Rees, Sofia Koch, Caroline Sanden, Yixin Wang, Elise Gubbins, Mahboobe GhaediRoland Kolbeck, Saumyaa Saumyaa, Jonas S. Erjefält, Gary P. Sims, Alison A. Humbles, Ian C. Scott, Xavier Romero Ros, E. Suzanne Cohen

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikel i vetenskaplig tidskriftPeer review


Background Epithelial damage, repair and remodelling are critical features of chronic airway diseases including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Interleukin (IL)-33 released from damaged airway epithelia causes inflammation via its receptor, serum stimulation-2 (ST2). Oxidation of IL-33 to a non-ST2-binding form (IL-33ox) is thought to limit its activity. We investigated whether IL-33ox has functional activities that are independent of ST2 in the airway epithelium. Methods In vitro epithelial damage assays and three-dimensional, air–liquid interface (ALI) cell culture models of healthy and COPD epithelia were used to elucidate the functional role of IL-33ox. Transcriptomic changes occurring in healthy ALI cultures treated with IL-33ox and COPD ALI cultures treated with an IL-33-neutralising antibody were assessed with bulk and single-cell RNA sequencing analysis. Results We demonstrate that IL-33ox forms a complex with receptor for advanced glycation end products (RAGE) and epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) expressed on airway epithelium. Activation of this alternative, ST2-independent pathway impaired epithelial wound closure and induced airway epithelial remodelling in vitro. IL-33ox increased the proportion of mucus-producing cells and reduced epithelial defence functions, mimicking pathogenic traits of COPD. Neutralisation of the IL-33ox pathway reversed these deleterious traits in COPD epithelia. Gene signatures defining the pathogenic effects of IL-33ox were enriched in airway epithelia from patients with severe COPD. Conclusions Our study reveals for the first time that IL-33, RAGE and EGFR act together in an ST2-independent pathway in the airway epithelium and govern abnormal epithelial remodelling and mucoobstructive features in COPD.

TidskriftEuropean Respiratory Journal
StatusPublished - 2023 sep. 1

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ)

  • Lungmedicin och allergi


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