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Oxysterols Protect Epithelial Cells Against Pore-Forming Toxins
Frontiers in Immunology, Volume: 13, Issue: 815775, Start page: 815775
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© 2022 Ormsby, Owens, Clement, Mills, Cronin, Bromfield and Sheldon. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY)Download (8.07MB)
Many species of bacteria produce toxins such as cholesterol-dependent cytolysins that form pores in cell membranes. Membrane pores facilitate infection by releasing nutrients, delivering virulence factors, and causing lytic cell damage - cytolysis. Oxysterols are oxidized forms of cholesterol that r...
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Many species of bacteria produce toxins such as cholesterol-dependent cytolysins that form pores in cell membranes. Membrane pores facilitate infection by releasing nutrients, delivering virulence factors, and causing lytic cell damage - cytolysis. Oxysterols are oxidized forms of cholesterol that regulate cellular cholesterol and alter immune responses to bacteria. Whether oxysterols also influence the protection of cells against pore-forming toxins is unresolved. Here we tested the hypothesis that oxysterols stimulate the intrinsic protection of epithelial cells against damage caused by cholesterol-dependent cytolysins. We treated epithelial cells with oxysterols and then challenged them with the cholesterol-dependent cytolysin, pyolysin. Treating HeLa cells with 27-hydroxycholesterol, 25-hydroxycholesterol, 7α-hydroxycholesterol, or 7β-hydroxycholesterol reduced pyolysin-induced leakage of lactate dehydrogenase and reduced pyolysin-induced cytolysis. Specifically, treatment with 10 ng/ml 27-hydroxycholesterol for 24 h reduced pyolysin-induced lactate dehydrogenase leakage by 88%, and reduced cytolysis from 74% to 1%. Treating HeLa cells with 27-hydroxycholesterol also reduced pyolysin-induced leakage of potassium ions, prevented mitogen-activated protein kinase cell stress responses, and limited alterations in the cytoskeleton. Furthermore, 27-hydroxycholesterol reduced pyolysin-induced damage in lung and liver epithelial cells, and protected against the cytolysins streptolysin O and Staphylococcus aureus α-hemolysin. Although oxysterols regulate cellular cholesterol by activating liver X receptors, cytoprotection did not depend on liver X receptors or changes in total cellular cholesterol. However, oxysterol cytoprotection was partially dependent on acyl-CoA:cholesterol acyltransferase (ACAT) reducing accessible cholesterol in cell membranes. Collectively, these findings imply that oxysterols stimulate the intrinsic protection of epithelial cells against pore-forming toxins and may help protect tissues against pathogenic bacteria.
oxysterol, epithelial cells, cholesterol, liver X receptor, pore-forming toxins, cholesterol-dependent cytolysin, cytoprotection
Faculty of Medicine, Health and Life Sciences
This study was supported in part by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number R01HD084316. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.