Differentiation of human SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells by all-trans retinoic acid activates the interleukin-18 system

J Interferon Cytokine Res. 2010 Feb;30(2):55-8.
Sallmon H, Hoene V, Weber SC, Dame C.
J Interferon Cytokine Res. 2010 Feb;30(2):55-8.
Il sistema della interleuchina-18 (IL-18) come nuovo bersaglio dell'acido all-trans retinoico (ATRA) nelle cellule di neuroblastoma, contribuisce alle proprietà terapeutiche dei retinoidi.

The clinical prognosis of children with high-stage neuroblastoma is still poor. Therapeutic approaches include surgery and cellular differentiation by retinoic acid, but also experimental interleukin-based immune modulation. However, the molecular mechanisms of all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA)-induced differentiation of neuroblastoma cells are incompletely understood. Herein, we examined the effect of ATRA on the activity of the interleukin-18 (IL-18) system in human SH- SY5Y neuroblastoma cells. It is shown that SH-SY5Y cells express IL-18 receptor (IL-18R) and the secreted antagonist IL-18-binding protein (IL-18BP), but no IL-18. SH-SY5Y cells are highly sensitive to ATRA treatment and react by cellular differentiation from a neuroblastic toward a more neuronal phenotype. This was associated with induction of IL-18 and reduction of IL-18BP expression, while IL-18R expression remained stable. Thereby, we identified the IL-18 system as a novel target of ATRA in neuroblastoma cells that might contribute to the therapeutic properties of retinoids in treatment of neuroblastoma.