The neuropeptide neuromedin U promotes IL-6 production from macrophages and endotoxin shock

Maiko Moriyama, Akihiro Matsukawa, Shinji Kudoh, Tomoko Takahashi, Takahiro Sato, Tatsuhiko Kano, Akihiko Yoshimura, Masayasu Kojima

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)


Neuromedin U (NMU) is a neuropeptide involved in appetite, circadian rhythm, and pronociception. However, the NMU receptor NMU-R1 has been shown to be expressed in immune cells and NMU promotes mast cell-dependent inflammation. In this study, we demonstrated that NMU plays an important role in IL-6 production in macrophages. NMU-deficient mice were resistant against cecal ligation puncture- as well as LPS-induced septic shock. IL-6 but not TNF-α levels were markedly reduced in LPS-treated NMU-deficient mice compared with wild type mice. Both NMU and NMU-R1 were expressed in wild type peritoneal macrophages, and treatment with LPS resulted in up-regulation of NMU but down-regulation of NMU-R1 expression, however, no down-regulation of NMU-R1 was observed in NMU-deficient macrophages where LPS-induced IL-6 production was severely reduced. These data suggest that LPS-induced IL-6 expression is partly dependent on autocrine/paracrine activation of the NMU-NMU-R1 signals in macrophages.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1149-1154
Number of pages6
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Mar 24
Externally publishedYes


  • Cecal ligation puncture
  • IL-6
  • Lipopolysaccharide
  • Macrophages
  • Neuromedin U

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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