Oxidative Protein Cross-linking Reactions Involving L-Tyrosine in Transforming Growth Factor-β1-stimulated Fibroblasts

Academic Article


  • The mechanisms by which ligand-stimulated generation of reactive oxygen species in nonphagocytic cells mediate biologic effects are largely unknown. The profibrotic cytokine, transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1), generates extracellular hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) in contrast to intracellular reactive oxygen species production by certain mitogenic growth factors in human lung fibroblasts. To determine whether tyrosine residues in fibroblast-derived extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins may be targets of H2O2-mediated dityrosine-dependent cross-linking reactions in response to TGF-β1, we utilized fluorophore-labeled tyramide, a structurally related phenolic compound that forms dimers with tyrosine, as a probe to detect such reactions under dynamic cell culture conditions. With this approach, a distinct pattern of fluorescent labeling that seems to target ECM proteins preferentially was observed in TGF-β1-treated cells but not in control cells. This reaction required the presence of a heme peroxidase and was inhibited by catalase or diphenyliodonium (a flavoenzyme inhibitor), similar to the effect on TGF-β1-induced dityrosine formation. Exogenous addition of H2O2 to control cells that do not release extracellular H2O2 produced a similar fluorescent labeling reaction. These results support the concept that, in the presence of heme peroxidases in vivo, TGF-β1-induced H2O2 production by fibroblasts may mediate oxidative dityrosine-dependent cross-linking of ECM protein(s). This effect may be important in the pathogenesis of human fibrotic diseases characterized by overexpression/activation of TGF-β1.
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    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Larios JM; Budhiraja R; Fanburg BL; Thannickal VJ
  • Start Page

  • 17437
  • End Page

  • 17441
  • Volume

  • 276
  • Issue

  • 20