Issued for the Endocrine Society by the Williams & Wilkins Co.
Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism vol:91 issue:9 pages:3566-3574
CONTEXT: 25-Hydroxyvitamin D can be activated to 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D(3) [1,25(OH)(2)D(3)] by the rate-limiting enzyme 1alpha-hydroxylase in cells of the immune system under control of immune stimuli, such as interferon-gamma (IFNgamma). In pathological situations, such as sarcoidosis, this can lead to systemic excess of 1,25(OH)(2)D(3) and hypercalcemia. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to elucidate the intracellular pathways used by the immune system to tightly regulate 1,25(OH)(2)D(3) production in monocytes and macrophages. DESIGN: Human monocytic THP1-cells were differentiated and activated by IFNgamma and a secondary stimulus, such as lipopolysaccharide or phorbol myristate acetate. 1alpha-Hydroxylase mRNA levels were quantified by real-time RT-PCR. The involvement of different signaling pathways in the regulation of this enzyme was investigated using specific pharmacological inhibitors, whereas phosphorylation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 1alpha and CCAAT/enhancer binding protein beta was investigated by Western blotting. RESULTS: In undifferentiated monocytic THP1 cells, IFNgamma needs to be combined with a second stimulus, such as lipopolysaccharide, to induce 1alpha-hydroxylase. In contrast, in phorbol myristate acetate-differentiated THP1 macrophages, IFNgamma alone induces 1alpha-hydroxylase and to much higher levels. Many different signaling pathways need to be activated concurrently to allow immune-mediated 1alpha-hydroxylase up-regulation. We show involvement of the Janus kinase-signal transducer and activator of transcription, MAPK, and nuclear factor-kappaB pathways, with a crucial role for the transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer binding protein beta. Furthermore, histone remodeling involving histone deacetylases and histone acetylase p300 is required. CONCLUSION: The present findings indicate that IFNgamma-mediated 1,25(OH)(2)D(3) production, as observed in granulomatous diseases such as sarcoidosis, will take place only under conditions where the necessary other signaling pathways are also activated.