Most cellular studies have used particulate β-glucans, such as yeast zymosan (crude β-glucan) and curdlan (purified β-glucan). However, little is known about the cellular mechanism of soluble β-glucans, including MD-Fraction, despite significant therapeutic implications.
In this study, we investigated the cellular mechanism of MD-Fraction in murine resident macrophages and compared it with two well-known β-glucan particles. MD-Fraction induced GM-CSF production rapidly through Dectin-1-independent ERK and p38 MAPK activation. Subsequently, MD-Fraction-induced GM-CSF enhanced proliferation and Dectin-1 expression, which permitted Dectin-1-mediated TNF-α induction through the Syk pathway.
Curdlan induced not only the proliferation and activation of Dectin-1/Syk signaling in a manner similar to MD-Fraction but also the uncontrolled, proinflammatory cytokine response. Contrastingly, zymosan reduced proliferation and Dectin-1 expression significantly, indicating that the mechanism of macrophage activation by MD-Fraction differs from that of zymosan.
This is the first study to demonstrate that purified β-glucans, such as MD-Fraction and curdlan, induce GM-CSF production directly, resulting in Dectin-1/Syk activation in resident macrophages.
In conclusion, we demonstrated that MD-Fraction induces cell proliferation and cytokine production without excessive inflammation in resident macrophages, supporting its immunotherapeutic potential.
JournalJournal of leukocyte biology
J Leukoc Biol (1938-3673)
Department of Microbial Chemistry, Kobe Pharmaceutical University, Kobe, Japan. organic [at] kobepharma-u.ac.jp
J Leukoc Biol. 2012 Apr;91(4):547-56
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