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25 July 2018 : Animal Research

Chlamydial Plasmid-Encoded Protein pGP3 Inhibits Development of Psoriasis-Like Lesions in Mice

Shuping Hou1BCG, Rong Xu1E, Congzhong Zhu2F, Shijun Shan1D, Long Han1B, Huiping Wang1A*

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.910472

Med Sci Monit 2018; 24: ANS5159-5167

Abstract

BACKGROUND: The anti-microbial protein cathelicidin LL-37 plays an important role in the pathogenesis of psoriasis by inducing inflammation. Our previous study showed that the chlamydial plasmid-encoded protein pGP3 forms a stable complex with LL-37 to neutralize its pro-inflammatory activity. Here, we explored whether pGP3 can inhibit the development of lesions in mice with imiquimod-induced psoriasis.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: The protein pGP3 was expressed in bacteria and purified using glutathione-conjugated agarose beads and a precision protease. The ability of the purified pGP3 to block chemotaxis mediated by LL-37 was tested in vitro using bone marrow-derived neutrophils. The ability of the protein to inhibit the development of psoriasis-like lesions was tested by topically or subcutaneously administering pGP3 in doses of 10 or 50 μg to mice previously treated with imiquimod. Mouse skin was evaluated using the psoriasis area and severity index (PASI) score and photography. Skin biopsies were taken on day 8 and analyzed histologically.

RESULTS: Purified pGP3 inhibited LL-37-mediated chemotaxis. Mice treated with 50 μg pGP3 showed clinical improvement with less severe erythema, infiltration, and scales; these mice also showed thinner dermis and less hyperkeratosis, parakeratosis, and inflammatory cell infiltration than mice treated with without 10 μg pGP3.

CONCLUSIONS: PGP3 can inhibit the development of psoriasis-like lesions in mice, possibly through its ability to bind LL-37. Future work should examine the mechanisms underlying this therapeutic effect.

Keywords: Psoriasis

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Medical Science Monitor eISSN: 1643-3750
Medical Science Monitor eISSN: 1643-3750