Regulation of found in inflammatory zone 1 expression in bleomycin-induced lung fibrosis: Role of IL-4/IL-13 and mediation via STAT-6

Tianju Liu, Hong Jin, Matthew Ullenbruch, Biao Hu, Naozumi Hashimoto, Bethany Moore, Andrew McKenzie, Nicholas W. Lukacs, Sem H. Phan

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157 Citations (Scopus)


Found in inflammatory zone (FIZZ)1, also known as resistin-like α, belongs to a novel class of cysteine-rich secreted protein family, named FIZZ/resistin-like molecule, with unique tissue expression patterns. FIZZ1 is induced, in alveolar type II epithelial cells (AECs) in bleomycin (BLM)-induced lung fibrosis, and found to induce myofibroblast differentiation in vitro. The objective of this study was to elucidate the regulation of AEC FIZZ1 expression in pulmonary fibrosis. AECs were isolated from rat lungs and the effects of a number of cytokines on FIZZ1 expression were evaluated by RT-PCR. Of all cytokines examined, only IL-4 and IL-13 were effective in stimulating FIZZ1 expression in AECs. Stimulation by IL-4/IL-13 was accompanied by increases in phosphorylated STAT6 and JAK1. FIZZ1 expression was also stimulated by transfection with a STAT6 expression plasmid, but was inhibited by antisense oligonucleotides directed against STAT6. In vivo studies showed that compared with wild-type controls, both IL-4- and IL-13-deficient mice showed reduced BLM-induced lung FIZZ1 expression and fibrosis, which were essentially abolished in IL-4 and IL-13 doubly deficient mice. Furthermore, STAT6-deficient mice showed marked reduction in BLM-induced lung FIZZ1 expression. Thus, IL-4 and IL-13 are potent inducers of AEC FIZZ1 expression via STAT6 and play key roles in BLM-induced lung FIZZ1 expression and fibrosis. This represents a potential mechanism by which IL-4/IL-13 could play a role in the pathogenesis of lung fibrosis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3425-3431
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 01-09-2004
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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