JCI table of contents -- March 8, 2006

more asthma-like

Chronic lung diseases such as asthma and cystic fibrosis are characterized by an increase in the number of cells known as goblet cells and an increase in the production of lung mucous. Although the molecular details of how these changes are regulated are not well defined, a new study by researchers from Cincinnati Childrens Hospital indicates that a protein known as SPDEF has an important role in controlling these processes.

In the study, which appears online on March 8 in advance of publication in the April print issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Jeffrey Whitsett and colleagues show that in vivo expression of SPDEF in mouse lung epithelial cells is increased by IL-13 (a soluble factor associated with asthma) and exposure to dust mite allergens. This increased SPDEF expression was associated with an increase in the number of goblet cells. In vitro, SPDEF was shown to interact with a protein known as TFF-1 and to increase the expression of genes encoding proteins that caused the epithelial cells to become goblet cells and to produce mucous proteins. This study therefore indicates that SPDEF has a crucial role in endowing the lung with the characteristics of chronic lung disease.

TITLE: SPDEF regulates goblet cell hyperplasia in the airway epithelium

Jeffrey A. Whitsett
Cincinnati Childrens Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA.
Phone: (513) 636-4830; Fax: (513) 636-7868; E-mail: jeff.whitsett@cchmc.org.

View the PDF of this article at: https://www.the-jci.org/article.php?id=29176

HEMATOLOGY: SHIP1 in platelets practices first aid

Platelets are cell fragments in the blood that have a central role in regulating hemostasis, the physiologic process whereby bleeding is stopped. Deregulation of platelet fu

Contact: Karen Honey
Journal of Clinical Investigation

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