Regulation of surfactant protein A mRNA by hormones and butyrate in cultured fetal rat lung

K. V. Nichols, J. Floros, D. W. Dynia, S. V. Veletza, C. M. Wilson, I. Gross

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We have previously shown that dexamethasone, triiodothyronine (T3) and dibutyryl adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (cAMP) stimulate phosphatidylcholine (PC) synthesis in fetal rat lung explants in culture. There are also additive interactions between these agents with regard to PC synthesis. In this study we examined the regulation of surfactant protein A (SP-A) mRNA in fetal rat lung in culture. Dexamethasone increased SP-A mRNA in the explants in a dose-dependent fashion (1-200 nM), but T3 did not. Whereas 8-bromo-cAMP increased SP-A mRNA, a decrease was observed with dibutyryl cAMP. These findings support the view that at least some of the genes involved in the synthesis of the various components of surfactant are independently regulated. Since we observed differences in the effects of a cAMP analogue which contained butyrate and one that did not, explants were then cultured with Na butyrate, a known regulator of gene expression. A significant decrease in SP-A mRNA was observed at mM concentrations. Exposure of the explants to α-aminobutyric acid, a butyric acid analogue which is elevated in the blood of infants of diabetic mothers, resulted in a significant decrease in SP-A mRNA at a concentration 1/25 of that required for Na butyrate. This observation raises the question of whether the decreased SP-A levels reported in fetuses of diabetic mothers may, at least in part, be related to this metabolite.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)L488-L495
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology
Issue number6 3-3
StatePublished - 1990

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Cell Biology


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