Knowledge of the mechanisms involved in the radiation response is critical for developing interventions to mitigate radiation-induced injury to normal tissues. Exposure to radiation leads to increased oxidative stress, DNA-damage, genomic instability and inflammation. The transcription factor CCAAT/enhancer binding protein delta (Cebpd; C/EBPδ is implicated in regulation of these same processes, but its role in radiation response is not known. We investigated the role of C/EBPδ in radiation-induced hematopoietic and intestinal injury using a Cebpd knockout mouse model. Cebpd-/- mice showed increased lethality at 7.4 and 8.5 Gy total-body irradiation (TBI), compared to Cebpd+/+ mice. Two weeks after a 6 Gy dose of TBI, Cebpd-/- mice showed decreased recovery of white blood cells, neutrophils, platelets, myeloid cells and bone marrow mononuclear cells, decreased colony-forming ability of bone marrow progenitor cells, and increased apoptosis of hematopoietic progenitor and stem cells compared to Cebpd+/+ controls. Cebpd-/- mice exhibited a significant dose-dependent decrease in intestinal crypt survival and in plasma citrulline levels compared to Cebpd+/+ mice after exposure to radiation. This was accompanied by significantly decreased expression of γ-H2AX in Cebpd-/- intestinal crypts and villi at 1 h post-TBI, increased mitotic index at 24 h post-TBI, and increase in apoptosis in intestinal crypts and stromal cells of Cebpd-/- compared to Cebpd+/+ mice at 4 h post-irradiation. This study uncovers a novel biological function for C/EBPδ in promoting the response to radiation-induced DNA-damage and in protecting hematopoietic and intestinal tissues from radiation-induced injury.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)