Experimental cell research

Inflammatory responses of stromal fibroblasts to inflammatory epithelial cells are involved in the pathogenesis of bovine mastitis.

PMID 27680776


Hypernomic secretion of epithelial cytokines has several effects on stromal cells. The contributions of inflammatory epithelial cells to stromal fibroblasts in bovine mammary glands with mastitis remain poorly understood. Here, we established an inflammatory epithelial cell model of bovine mastitis with gram-negative lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and gram-positive lipoteichoic acid (LTA) bacterial cell wall components. We characterized immune responses of mammary stromal fibroblasts induced by inflammatory epithelial cells. Our results showed that inflammatory epithelial cells affected stromal fibroblast characteristics by increasing inflammatory mediator expression, elevating extracellular matrix protein deposition, decreasing proliferation capacity, and enhancing migration ability. The changes in stromal fibroblast proliferation and migration abilities were mediated by signal molecules, such as WNT signal pathway components. LPS- and LTA-induced inflammatory epithelial cells triggered different immune responses in stromal fibroblasts. Thus, in mastitis, bovine mammary gland stromal fibroblasts were affected by inflammatory epithelial cells and displayed inflammation-specific changes, suggesting that fibroblasts play crucial roles in bovine mastitis.