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Frontiers of Medicine >> 2021, Volume 15, Issue 2 doi: 10.1007/s11684-020-0806-5

Bioactive hyaluronic acid fragments inhibit lipopolysaccharide-induced inflammatory responses via the Toll-like receptor 4 signaling pathway

. Department of Infectious Disease, The People’s Hospital of Bozhou, Bozhou 236800, China.. Department of Infectious Disease, The People’s Hospital of Linyi, Linyi 276000, China.. Department of Infectious Disease, The People’s Hospital of Yancheng, Yancheng 224000, China.. AnRuipu Biological Products Research Co., Ltd., Hangzhou 310019, China.. Huadong Medical Institute of Biotechniques, Nanjing 210002, China.. Institute of Liver Disease, Jinling Hospital, Nanjing 210002, China

Received: 2020-08-17 Accepted: 2020-09-17 Available online: 2020-09-17

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The high- and the low-molecular weight hyaluronic acids (HMW-HA and LMW-HA, respectively) showed different biological activities in inflammation. However, the role of LMW-HA in inflammatory response is controversial. In this study, we aimed to investigate the effect of bioactive hyaluronan (B-HA) on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced inflammatory responses in human macrophages and mice. B-HA was produced from HA treated with glycosylated recombinant human hyaluronidase PH20. Human THP-1 cells were induced to differentiate into macrophages. THP-1-derived macrophages were treated with B-HA, LPS, or B-HA+LPS. The mRNA expression and the production of inflammatory cytokines were determined using quantitative real-time PCR and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The phosphorylation levels of proteins in the nuclear factor- B (NF- B), mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), and IRF-3 signaling pathways were measured using Western blot. The efficacy of B-HA was assessed in a mouse model of LPS-induced inflammation. Results showed that B-HA inhibited the expression of TNF-α, IL-6, IL-1, and IFN-β, and enhanced the expression of the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 in LPS-induced inflammatory responses in THP-1-derived macrophages and . B-HA significantly suppressed the phosphorylation of the TLR4 signaling pathway proteins p65, IKKα/β, I Bα, JNK1/2, ERK1/2, p38, and IRF-3. In conclusion, our results demonstrated that the B-HA attenuated the LPS-stimulated inflammatory response by inhibiting the activation of the TLR4 signaling pathway. B-HA could be a potential anti-inflammatory drug in the treatment of inflammatory disease.

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