Differential expression and regulation of cyclooxygenase isozymes in thymic stromal cells

Bianca Rocca, Lm Spain, G Ciabattoni, C Patrono, Ga Fitzgerald

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Prostaglandins (PGs) are lipid-derived mediators of rapid and localized cellular responses. Given the role of PG in supporting thymic T cell development, we investigated the expression of the PG synthases, also known as cyclooxygenases (COX)-1 and -2, in the biosynthesis of PGs in thymic stromal cell lines. The predominant isozyme expressed in cortical thymic epithelial cells was COX-1, while COX-2 predominated in the medulla. IFN-gamma up-regulated expression and activity of COX-2 in medullary cells, in which COX-2 was expressed constitutively. In contrast, IFN-gamma down-regulated COX-1 activity, but not expression, in cortical cells. Stromal cells support T cell development in the thymus, although the mediators of this effect are unknown. Selective inhibition of COX-2, but not COX-1, blocked the adhesion of CD4+CD8+ and CD4+CD8- thymocytes to medullary cell lines. No effect of the inhibitors was observed on the interactions of thymocytes with cortical epithelial lines. These data further support the differential regulation of COX-1 and COX-2 expression and function in thymic stromal cells. PGs produced by COX-2 in the medullary thymic stroma may regulate the development of thymocytes by modulating their interaction with stromal cells.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)4589-4597
Numero di pagine9
RivistaJournal of Immunology
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 1999


  • Animals
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Cell Line
  • Cyclooxygenase 1
  • Cyclooxygenase 2
  • Cyclooxygenase 2 Inhibitors
  • Cyclooxygenase Inhibitors
  • Enzyme Activation
  • Interferon-gamma
  • Isoenzymes
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Prostaglandin-Endoperoxide Synthases
  • Stromal Cells
  • T-Lymphocytes
  • Thymus Gland


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