Involvement of IL-1 genes in the cellular responses to carbon nanotube exposure

Yke Jildouw Arnoldussen, Asbjørn Skogstad, Vidar Skaug, Mayes Kasem, Aage Haugen, Nathalie Benker, Stephan Weinbruch, Ron N. Apte, Shanbeh Zienolddiny

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The interleukin-1 (IL-1) family has been implicated in cellular responses to nanoparticles including carbon nanotubes (CNTs). IL-1α and β are key proinflammatory cytokines important in inflammatory and oxidative stress responses. The aim of this study was to characterize the role of IL-1 in cellular responses of CNTs in cells from IL-1α/β wild type (IL1-WT) mice and cells with reduced inflammatory potential from IL-1α/β deficient (IL1-KO) mice. Two multi-walled CNTs, CNT-1 containing long and thick fibers and CNT-2 containing short and thin fibers, were compared to UICC crocidolite asbestos fibers. Upon CNT exposure toxicity and apoptosis were affected differently in IL1-WT and IL1-KO cells. Upregulation of TNFα and IL-1α mRNA expression in IL1-WT cells was dependent on the type of CNT. On the contrary precursor IL-1α protein was downregulated after 24. h. The mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) was activated in IL1-KO cells and regulated by CNTs, whereas no significant changes of extracellular regulated kinase (ERK) were observed when comparing IL1-WT and IL1-KO cells. In summary, the results presented here indicate that IL-1 contributes to the cellular and molecular effects of CNT exposure and that the type of CNT has an important effect on the cellular response.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)128-137
Number of pages10
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 May 2015


  • Apoptosis
  • CNT
  • IL-1
  • Inflammation
  • MAPK

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Hematology


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