Neurturin influences inflammatory responses and airway remodeling in different mouse asthma models.
Neurturin (NTN) was previously described for its neuronal activities, but recently, we have shown that this factor is also involved in asthma physiopathology. However, the underlying mechanisms of NTN are unclear. The aim of this study was to investigate NTN involvement in acute bronchial Th2 responses, to analyze its interaction with airway structural cells, and to study its implication in remodeling during acute and chronic bronchial inflammation in C57BL/6 mice. We analyzed the features of allergic airway inflammation in wild-type and NTN(-/-) mice after sensitization with two different allergens, OVA and house dust mite. We showed that NTN(-/-) dendritic cells and T cells had a stronger tendency to activate the Th2 pathway in vitro than similar wild-type cells. Furthermore, NTN(-/-) mice had significantly increased markers of airway remodeling like collagen deposition. NTN(-/-) lung tissues showed higher levels of neutrophils, cytokine-induced neutrophil chemoattractant, matrix metalloproteinase 9, TNF-alpha, and IL-6. Finally, NTN had the capacity to decrease IL-6 and TNF-alpha production by immune and epithelial cells, showing a direct anti-inflammatory activity on these cells. Our findings support the hypothesis that NTN could modulate the allergic inflammation in different mouse asthma models.