Lipoxin A4 increases survival by decreasing systemic inflammation and bacterial load in sepsis

Jean Walker, Eric Dichter, Grace Lacorte, David Kerner, Bernd Spur, Ana Rodriguez, Kingsley Yin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

111 Scopus citations


Sepsis is characterized by systemic inflammation with release of a large amount of inflammatory mediators. If sustained, this inflammatory response can lead to multiple organ failure and/or immunoparalysis. In the latter condition, the host may be susceptible to opportunistic infections or be unable to clear existing infections. Therefore, it is potentially beneficial to resolve inflammation by reducing inflammation without compromising host defense. We examined the effect of lipoxin A4 (LXA4), a compound with inflammatory resolution properties, in the cecal ligation and puncture (CLP) model of sepsis. Cecal ligation and puncture rats were given either saline or LXA4 (40 μg/kg, i.p.) 5 h after surgery. Lipoxin A4 administration increased 8-day survival of CLP rats, which lived longer than 48 h, and attenuated tissue injury after 8 days. Therefore, we investigated the effects of LXA4 on systemic inflammation and bacterial load 48 h after CLP sepsis. Plasma IL-6, monocyte chemotactic protein 1, and IL-10 levels were reduced in LXA4-treated rats compared with CLP rats given saline vehicle. Lipoxin A4 reduced phosphorylation of the p65 subunit of nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) at serines 536 and 468 in peritoneal macrophages, suggesting that LXA4 reduced production of proinflammatory mediators through an NF-κB-mediated mechanism. Lipoxin A4 reduced blood bacterial load and increased peritoneal macrophage number without affecting phagocytic ability, suggesting that LXA4 reduced blood bacterial load by enhancing macrophage recruitment. It also suggests that LXA4 reduced systemic inflammation and NF-κB activation without compromising host defense. Increased macrophage recruitment was in part due to a direct effect of LXA4 as LXA4 increased peritoneal macrophage recruitment in sham controls and partly due to reduced production of IL-10 as LXA4 decreased macrophage IL-10 release (a known inhibitor of macrophage migration) after CLP. The results suggest that LXA4 increased survival in sepsis by simultaneously reducing systemic inflammation as well as bacterial spread.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)410-416
Number of pages7
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2011
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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