Short-lived peripheral blood eosinophils are recruited to the lungs of asthmatics after allergen challenge, where they become long-lived effector cells central to disease pathophysiology. GM-CSF is an important cytokine which promotes eosinophil differentiation, function, and survival after transit into the lung. In human eosinophils, GM-CSF production is controlled by regulated mRNA stability mediated by the 3′ untranslated region, AU-rich elements (ARE). We identified human Y box-binding factor 1 (YB-1) as a GM-CSF mRNA ARE-specific binding protein that is capable of enhancing GM-CSF-dependent survival of eosinophils. Using a transfection system that mimics GM-CSF metabolism in eosinophils, we have shown that transduced YB-1 stabilized GM-CSF mRNA in an ARE-dependent mechanism, causing increased GM-CSF production and enhanced in vitro survival. RNA EMSAs indicate that YB-1 interacts with the GM-CSF mRNA through its 3′ untranslated region ARE. In addition, endogenous GM-CSF mRNA coimmunoprecipitates with endogenous YB-1 protein in activated eosinophils but not resting cells. Thus, we propose a model whereby activation of eosinophils leads to YB-1 binding to and stabilization of GM-CSF mRNA, ultimately resulting in GM-CSF release and prolonged eosinophil survival.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy