Clinical and experimental immunology

Down-regulation of single immunoglobulin interleukin-1R-related molecule (SIGIRR)/TIR8 expression in intestinal epithelial cells during inflammation.

PMID 21077278


Single immunoglobulin (Ig) interleukin-1R-related molecule (SIGIRR) is an Ig-like membrane protein critical for negative regulation of Toll-like receptor (TLR)-4-mediated signalling. We investigated SIGIRR expression and its regulation mechanism in intestinal epithelial cells (IECs) during inflammation. Endoscopic biopsy specimens were obtained from active and inactive colonic mucosa of ulcerative colitis (UC) patients, then SIGIRR expression was examined using real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and immunohistochemistry (IH). Mice experimental colitis models were established by administrations of sulphonic acid (TNBS) and dextran sodium sulphate (DSS), and epithelial expression of SIGIRR was examined using real-time PCR, IH and flow cytometry. The effects of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and tumour necrosis factor (TNF)-α on SIGIRR expression were evaluated in vitro using cultured IECs. To elucidate SIGIRR expression regulation in IECs, binding ability of the transcription factor SP1 at the responsive element of the SIGIRR promoter was examined using gel-shift and chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) assays. In human colonic samples, SIGIRR was expressed mainly in IECs at levels significantly higher in inactive compared to active mucosa. In the mice, SIGIRR colonic expression decreased rapidly after colitis development and returned gradually to basal levels. Experimental colitis-mediated down-regulation of SIGIRR in IECs was also confirmed by IH and flow cytometry results. Further, inflammatory conditions induced by TLR ligands and TNF-α caused significant down-regulation of SIGIRR expression in IECs, which was dependent upon decreased SP1 binding at the responsive element of the SIGIRR promoter. We found that SIGIRR is expressed in IECs and serves as a negative regulator to maintain gut innate immunity, which is down-regulated during inflammation by inhibition of an SP1-mediated pathway.