Regulation of leukotriene and platelet-activating factor synthesis in human alveolar macrophages

Mir Shamsuddin, Ellen Chen, James Anderson, Lewis J. Smith*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


It has been suggested that phospholipase A2 (PLA2) contributes to the regulation of leukotriene (LT) and platelet-activating factor (PAF) synthesis by controlling the release of their precursors, arachidonic acid (AA) and lysophosphatidylcholine (lysoPC), from membrane phospholipids. In rat alveolar macrophages (AMs), PLA2 appears to have a major role in LT synthesis but a more limited role in PAF synthesis. The present study was designed to define the role of PLA2 in LT and PAF synthesis in human AMs and determine whether differences exist between AMs obtained from normal subjects and those from patients with asthma. In the normal subjects, the calcium ionophore A23187 (Cal) increased AM PAF synthesis (percent incorporation of tritiated acetate) by 135% (p < 0.01) and LTB4 synthesis 88-fold (p < 0.001). Phorbol myristate acetate (PMA) had little effect alone, but it had a synergistic effect with Cal, increasing PAF synthesis by 466% and LTB4 synthesis to 229-fold above the control values (p < 0.001 for both). Ro 25-4331, a combined cytosolic (c) and secretory (s) PLA2 inhibitor, had little effect on the Cal-stimulated PAF synthesis, but it completely blocked the effect of PMA, it also blocked the Cal- and Cal+PMA-stimulated LTB4 synthesis. AACOCF3, a cPLA2 inhibitor, had no effect on either Cal or Cal+PMA-stimulated PAF synthesis, it reduced LTB4 synthesis, but it did so less effectively than Ro 25-4331. CoA-independent transacylase (CoAI-TA) activity in the AMs increased after stimulation and exposure to Ro 25-4331. SK and F 45905, a CoAI-TA inhibitor, reduced stimulated PAF synthesis by 30% to 40%. Patients with asthma had similar results except that cPLA2 had a greater role in stimulated LTB4 synthesis. These data indicate that PLA2 plays a direct role in human AM LT synthesis; both the cytosolic and secretory forms contribute to LT synthesis; PLA2 appears to have a more limited role in PAF synthesis, although it mediates the synergistic effect of PMA, probably via sPLA2; and CoAI-TA contributes to PAF synthesis during PLA2 inhibition. With the exception of the greater role for cPLA2 in stimulated LTB4 synthesis in the patients with asthma, the contributions of PLA2 and CoAI-TA to AM LT and PAF synthesis appear to be similar in normal subjects and patients with asthma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)615-626
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Laboratory and Clinical Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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