Acute Alcohol Exposure Exerts Anti-Inflammatory Effects by Inhibiting IB Kinase Activity and p65 Phosphorylation in Human Monocytes

Mandrekar, P.; Jeliazkova, V.; Catalano, D.; Szabo, G.

The Journal of Immunology 178(12): 7686-7693


DOI: 10.4049/jimmunol.178.12.7686
Accession: 068490482

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Acute alcohol use is associated with impaired immune responses and decreased proinflammatory cytokine production. Our earlier studies have shown that acute alcohol intake inhibits NF-kappaB DNA binding in an IkappaBalpha-independent manner. We report using human peripheral blood monocytes and Chinese hamster ovary cells transfected with CD14 cells that acute alcohol treatment in vitro exerts NF-kappaB inhibition by disrupting phosphorylation of p65. Immunoprecipitation of p65 and IkappaBalpha revealed that acute alcohol exposure for 1 h decreased NF-kappaB-IkappaBalpha complexes in the cytoplasm. Phosphorylation of p65 at Ser(536) is mediated by IkappaB kinase (IKK)beta and is required for NF-kappaB-dependent cellular responses. We show that acute alcohol treatment decreased LPS-induced IKKalpha and IKKbeta activity resulting in decreased phosphorylation of p65 at Ser(536). Furthermore, nuclear expression of IKKalpha increased after alcohol treatment, which may contribute to inhibition of NF-kappaB. Decreased phosphorylation of nuclear p65 at Ser(276) was likely not due to alcohol-induced inhibition of protein kinase A and mitogen- and stress-activated protein kinase-1 activity. Although decreased IkappaBalpha phosphorylation after acute alcohol treatment was attributable to reduced IKKbeta activity, degradation of IkappaBalpha during alcohol exposure was IKKbeta-independent. Alcohol-induced degradation of IkappaBalpha in the presence of a 26S proteasome inhibitor suggested proteasome-independent IkappaBalpha degradation. Collectively, our studies suggest that acute alcohol exposure modulates IkappaBalpha-independent NF-kappaB activity primarily by affecting phosphorylation of p65. These findings further implicate an important role for IKKbeta in the acute effects of alcohol in immune cells.