Pollen-induced oxidative DNA damage response regulates miRNAs controlling allergic inflammation

Leopoldo Aguilera-Aguirre, Wenging Hao, Lang Pan, Xiaoxue Li, Alfredo Saavedra-Molina, Attila Bacsi, Zsolt Radak, Sanjiv Sur, Allan R. Brasier, Xueqing Ba, Istvan Boldogh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


A mucosal oxidative burst is a hallmark response to pollen exposure that promotes allergic inflammatory responses. Reactive species constituents of oxidative stress signal via the modification of cellular molecules including nucleic acids. One of the most abundant forms of oxidative genomic base damage is 8-oxo-7,8-dihydroguanine (8-oxoG), which is removed from DNA by 8-oxoguanine DNA glycosylase 1 (OGG1). OGG1 in complex with 8-oxoG acts as a GDP-GTP exchange factor and induces acute inflammation; however, the mechanism(s) by which OGG1 signaling regulates allergic airway inflammation is not known. Here, we postulate that the OGG1 signaling pathway differentially altered the levels of small regulatory RNAs and increased the expression of T helper 2 (Th2) cytokines in ragweed pollen extract (RWPE)-challenged lungs. To determine this, the lungs of sensitized mice expressing or lacking OGG1 were challenged with RWPE and/or with OGG1’s excision product 8-oxoG. The responses in lungs were assessed by next-generation sequencing, as well as various molecular and histological approaches. The results showed that RWPE challenge induced oxidative burst and damage to DNA and activated OGG1 signaling, resulting in the differential expression of 84 micro-RNAs (miRNAs), which then exacerbated antigen-driven allergic inflammation and histological changes in the lungs. The exogenous administration of the downregulated let-7b-p3 mimetic or inhibitors of upregulated miR-23a or miR-27a decreased eosinophil recruitment and mucus and collagen production via controlling the expression of IL-4, IL-5, and IL-13. Together, these data demonstrate the roles of OGG1 signaling in the regulation of antigen-driven allergic immune responses via differential expression of miRNAs upstream of Th2 cytokines and eosinophils.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L1058-L1068
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2017


  • Allergy
  • Cell signaling
  • DNA repair
  • Micro-RNAs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cell Biology


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