J Rhinol.  1998 May;5(1):27-32.

Changes Produced by Different Concentrations of Inflammatory Cytokines in the Proliferation and Ciliary Movement of Human Respiratory Epithelial Cells

  • 1Department of Otorhinolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Biomedical Engineering, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


The aim of this study was to determine the effects of cytokines IL-1beta, TNF-alpha, and TGF-beta on the proliferation and ciliary beat frequency (CBF) of human nasal epithelial cells (HNECs) in vitro. Subcultured HNECs were incubated in a medium containing recombinant human (rh) cytokines rhIL-1beta rhTNF-alpha and rhTGF-beta at concentrations of 0.01 ng/ml, 0.1 ng/ml, 1 ng/ml, 10 ng/ml, and 100 ng/ml. After a two-day incubation with these cytokines, daily cell proliferation was measured by MTT assay for six days. The CBF was measured at concentrations of 1 ng/ml of rhIL-1beta 10 ng/ml of TNF-alpha and 1 ng/ml of TGF-beta solutions. While rhIL-1beta inhibited proliferation of HNECs in concentration-dependent and time-dependent manners, rhTNF-alpha stimulated HNEC growth at concentrations ranging from 0.01 ng/ml to 10 ng/ml in concentration-dependent and time-dependent manners. In contrast, rhTGF-beta inhibited HNEC growth irrespective of concentration and incubation time. The CBF of the human nasal ciliated epithelial cells increased after the addition of rhIL-1beta and rhTNF-alpha The CBF increased progressively for four hours after the addition of rhIL-1beta and rhTNF-alpha The increased CBF continued for 24 hours and decreased after two days. However, no variation of the CBF was observed after the addition of rhTGF-beta regardless of concentration or incubation time. The results of this study suggest that during acute inflammation, IL-1beta TNF-alpha and TGF-beta may have important roles in the repair and defense mechanism of the human nasal epithelium by regulating the proliferation and CBF of nasal epithelial cells.


Cytokines; Human nasal epithelial cells; Proliferation; Ciliary movement
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