Cigarette smoke (CS)-induced inflammation in macrophages is involved in the pathological process of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Necroptosis, which is a form of programmed necrosis, has a close relationship with robust inflammation, while its roles in COPD are unclear.
Necroptosis markers were measured in mouse alveolar macrophages and cultured bone marrow-derived macrophages (BMDMs). Necroptosis inhibitors were used to block necroptosis in BMDMs, and inflammatory cytokines were detected. We further explored the related signaling pathways.
In this study, we demonstrated the way in which necroptosis, in addition to its upstream and downstream signals, regulates CS-induced inflammatory responses in macrophages. We observed that CS exposure caused a significant increase in the levels of necroptosis markers (receptor interacting kinases [RIPK] 1 and 3) in mouse alveolar macrophages and BMDMs. Pharmacological inhibition of RIPK1 or 3 caused a significant suppression in CS extract (CSE)-induced inflammatory cytokines, chemokine ligands (CXCL) 1 and 2, and interleukin (IL)-6 in BMDMs. CSE-induced necroptosis was regulated by mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (mitoROS), which also promoted inflammation in BMDMs. Furthermore, necroptosis regulated CSE-induced inflammatory responses in BMDMs, most likely through activation of the nuclear factor-κB pathway.