Pflügers Archiv

, Volume 446, Issue 4, pp 437–446 | Cite as

Norepinephrine-induced interleukin-6 increase in rat hearts: differential signal transduction in myocytes and non-myocytes

  • W. BriestEmail author
  • B. Raßler
  • A. Deten
  • M. Leicht
  • R. Morwinski
  • D. Neichel
  • G. Wallukat
  • T. Ziegelhöffer
  • H.-G. Zimmer
Cell and Molecular Physiology


Continuous i.v. infusion of norepinephrine in rats has been shown to induce early interleukin (IL)-6 mRNA expression in the left ventricle (LV) which was followed by hypertrophy and fibrosis. In this study, two approaches were used. In the first, NE (0.1 mg/kg per hour) was infused i.v. in rats for several time periods, and freshly obtained ventricular myocardium was dissociated into myocyte (MC) and non-myocyte (NMC) fractions. Second, isolated adult MCs and fibroblasts were treated with NE (10 μM). NE infusion (4 h, in vivo) caused an 11-fold increase in IL-6 mRNA in both cell populations. In vitro treatment of isolated adult MCs for 2 h and of fibroblasts for 1 h with NE induced a 3.5- and 23-fold maximum increase, respectively, in IL-6 mRNA. After in vivo NE treatment, the expression of the mRNA of the transcriptional factor of IL-6, C/EBP-β, was elevated earlier (after 45 min of NE infusion) than IL-6 mRNA (after 4 h) and was seen in MCs and NMCs. The mRNAs of both receptors of IL-6, the soluble IL6R and gp130, were increased subsequently to IL-6 mRNA. Gp130 was elevated after 24 h and, like IL6R, predominantly in NMCs. In contrast, the IL6R protein and the downstream regulator STAT3 were increased only in MCs after 24 h of NE infusion. The mRNA of C/EBP-δ, which is regulated by STAT3, was elevated only in myocytes.


Cell culture Cytokines IL-6 mRNA In vivo rat heart Norepinephrine Protein phosphorylation RNase protection assay Signal transduction 



This work was supported by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (ZI 199/10-3, ZI 199/10-4), by a grant from the Medical Faculty of the University of Leipzig (formel.1-10) and by a grant of BMBF (NBL-3-Förderung; Kennzeichen 01ZZ0106). The excellent technical assistance of Grit Marx is gratefully appreciated.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag  2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • W. Briest
    • 1
    Email author
  • B. Raßler
    • 1
  • A. Deten
    • 1
  • M. Leicht
    • 1
  • R. Morwinski
    • 2
  • D. Neichel
    • 2
  • G. Wallukat
    • 2
  • T. Ziegelhöffer
    • 3
  • H.-G. Zimmer
    • 1
  1. 1.Carl-Ludwig-Institute of PhysiologyUniversity of Leipzig LeipzigGermany
  2. 2.Max-Delbrück-Center for Molecular MedicineBerlin-BuchGermany
  3. 3.Department of Experimental CardiologyMax-Planck-InstituteBad NauheimGermany

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