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LL-37 and its analog FF/CAP18 attenuate neutrophil migration in sepsis-induced acute lung injury. Qin Xiuchuan,Zhu Guangfa,Huang Lixue,Zhang Wenwei,Huang Yan,Xi Xin Journal of cellular biochemistry INTRODUCTION:Sepsis can result in acute lung injury. LL-37 is a small cationic host defense peptide involved in anti-inflammatory. In the current study, it was hypothesized that antimicrobial peptide LL-37 could play a protective role in attenuating the progression of sepsis-induced acute lung injury. METHODS:Forty male C57BL/6 mice were induced into sepsis using cecal ligation and puncture, and subsequently administered with recombinant mouse osteopontin. Peptides LL-37, the LL-37 analog (FF/CAP18, called sLL-37), or normal saline was intravenously administered into septic mice for 20 hours. Then, proinflammatory cytokines (IL-6 and IL-1β), acute lung injury markers (alanine aminotransferase [ALT], aspartate aminotransferase [AST], and lactate dehydrogenase [LDH]), the neutrophil infiltration marker (myeloperoxidase [MPO]), and neutrophil infiltration were detected. Furthermore, the neutrophil migration and expression of migration-related factors (focal adhesion kinase [FAK], ERK, and P38) in differentiated HL-60 cells were detected. RESULTS:Septic mice had upregulated IL-6, IL-1β, ALT, AST, LDH, MPO, p-FAK, p-ERK, and p-P38, infiltrated neutrophils, and migrated neutrophil-like HL-60 cells. In contrast, the administration of peptide LL-37 and sLL-37 inhibited all these changes. Compared with septic mice, it was found that proinflammatory cytokines, lung injury markers, MPO, and infiltrated neutrophils decreased in mice treated with LL-37 and sLL-37. In addition, the migrated neutrophil-like HL-60 cells and activated p-FAK, p-ERK, and p-P38 proteins were suppressed by LL-37 and sLL-37 treatments. CONCLUSIONS:Peptide LL-37 and its analog sLL-37 attenuated the progression of sepsis-induced acute lung injury by inhibiting neutrophil infiltration and migration through the FAK, ERK, and P38 pathways. 10.1002/jcb.27641