CXC chemokine expression and synthesis in skeletal muscle during ischemia/reperfusion

Hong T. Hua, Hassan Al-Badawi, Fateh Entabi, Michael C. Stoner, Rachel E. Diamond, James A. Bonheur, Stuart Houser, Michael T. Watkins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Background: The chemokines keratinocyte-Derived Cytokine (KC) and macrophage inflammatory protein (MIP)-2, murine equivalents of human interleukin 8, have been implicated in remote injury after acute hind limb ischemia/reperfusion (I/R). These studies were designed to determine whether the cytokines responsible for remote tissue injury are also synthesized and accumulate in the ischemic or reperfused hind limb. Methods: B6, 129SF2/J mice were subjected to either 3 hours of unilateral hind limb ischemia alone (IA) or 3 hours of ischemia followed by 4 or 24 hours of reperfusion (I/R). After IA or I/R, experimental and control (nonischemic) contralateral hind limbs were harvested for analysis of protein content, messenger RNA (mRNA), tissue edema, and viability. Results: IA did not increase KC or MIP-2 mRNA or protein levels. In contrast, I/R resulted in a 15- and 10-fold increase in KC mRNA after 4 and 24 hours of reperfusion, respectively. KC protein levels were increased 10-fold after 4 hours of reperfusion and 30-fold after 24 hours (vs IA or sham; P < .001). MIP-2 mRNA transiently increased 42-fold after 4 hours of reperfusion but decreased to basal levels after 24 hours of reperfusion. Despite the relative increase in MIP-2 mRNA by 4 hours of reperfusion, significantly increased (8- to 10 fold) MIP-2 protein levels were not detected until 24 hours of reperfusion only in the reperfused limbs. Tissue edema was increased significantly (P < .01) compared with sham after just 4 hours of reperfusion and remained increased at 24 hours. Tissue viability decreased 52% after 4 hours of reperfusion and did not change significantly by 24 hours. Conclusions: Skeletal muscle is a site of significant ongoing chemokine synthesis during reperfusion. The persistent increase in muscle chemokine levels at 24 hours of reperfusion was not associated with increased edema or injury. The role of these chemokines during reperfusion may be further investigated by local or oral administration of chemokines or chemokine receptor antagonists. Clinical Relevance: I/R injury remains an important clinical problem across a variety of surgical specialties. In the critical care arena, serum levels of proinflammatory cytokines have been useful in predicting the mortality associated with acute respiratory distress syndrome and sepsis. In this article, the data presented indicate that murine skeletal muscle produces potent proinflammatory neutrophil and macrophage chemokines during reperfusion, but not during ischemia. These findings suggest that measurement of tissue and/or serum levels of chemokines during reperfusion may be an important adjunct to predicting tissue injury along with ongoing inflammation during the clinical course of reperfusion injury. Within the vascular system, severe inflammatory responses are usually associated with thrombotic events. New techniques to noninvasively image thrombin activation (by using magnetic resonance imaging) in reperfused limbs may coincide with the pattern of murine skeletal muscle chemokine expression in humans. The data suggest that reperfusion is when chemokine mRNA and protein synthesis increase. Within the time periods studied in these experiments, the chemokine component of the inflammatory response remained in the reperfused, rather than the systemic nonreperfused, tissue. This observation may underestimate the degree of the systemic response to ischemia because the single mouse hind limb represents only 7% of the mouse total body area, whereas the human limb represents nearly 18% of the adult body area. Despite this shortcoming, these data provide potential temporal and quantitative information regarding the location and magnitude of chemokine synthesis in skeletal muscle during reperfusion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)337-343
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of vascular surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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