International journal of molecular medicine

PBEF promotes the apoptosis of pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells and regulates the expression of inflammatory factors and AQP1 through the MAPK pathways.

PMID 26178576


Pre-B cell colony-enhancing factor (PBEF) has been shown to have a variety of biological functions. Studies have proven that PBEF plays a functional role in acute lung injury (ALI). Therefore, in this study, we aimed to confirm the importance of PBEF in ALI. The effects of PBEF overexpression on the apoptosis of human pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells (HPMECs) were analyzed by flow cytometry, and the results indicated that PBEF promoted the apoptosis of HPMECs, which aggravated the development of ALI. Comparative experiments involving increasing and decreasing PBEF expression demonstrated that PBEF promoted the expression of inflammatory factors, such as interleukin (IL)‑1β, IL‑6 and IL‑8 in the HPMECs , thus intensifying the inflammatory response. PBEF also inhibited the expression of aquaporin 1 (AQP1), which caused a dysfunction and imbalance in water transport. Moreover, we also found that tumor necrosis factor (TNF)‑α promoted the expression of PBEF in the HPMECs. After blocking the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) and phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) pathways, we found that PBEF regulated the expression of inflammatory factors and AQP1, mainly through the MAPK pathways. Taken together, these results demonstrate that the increase in intracellular PBEF expression promoted the apoptosis of HPMECs and the expression of inflammatory factors and thus enhanced the inflammatory response and inhibited the expression of AQP1, which resulted in abnormal water transport, diminishing the regulatory effects of AQP1 on water transport.