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TRPV1 mediates capsaicin-stimulated metabolic activity but not cell death or inhibition of interleukin-1β release in human THP-1 monocytes

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-19, 21:31 authored by Kunde, DA, Yingchoncharoen, J, Jurkovic, S, Dominic GeraghtyDominic Geraghty
Human monocytes and dendritic cells express transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) which may play a role in mediating the inflammatory, immune and cancer surveillance responses of these cells. The aim of the present study was to investigate TRPV1 expression and function in THP-1 monocytic cells. RT-PCR and Western blot were used to detect TRPV1. The metabolic activity and viability of THP-1 cells following exposure to vanilloids was assessed using resorufin production from rezazurin. Cytokine release was measured using ELISA. TRPV1 was expressed in cultured THP-1 monocytic cells and naïve monocytes. Lower concentrations (<250 μM) of capsaicin, but not other putative TRPV1 agonists, were shown to stimulate cell metabolic activity, whereas at concentrations >250 μM, all agonists decreased metabolic activity. Capsaicin-stimulated THP-1 metabolic activity was blocked by the TRPV1 antagonist, 5-iodo-resiniferatoxin (5’-IRTX), whereas the decline in resorufin production by THP-1 cells at higher capsaicin concentrations (due to cell death), was not affected by 5’-IRTX. Finally, capsaicin (≤125 μM) significantly increased lipopolysaccharide-stimulated IL-6 and TNF-α release from THP-1 cells, whereas phytohaemagglutinin-stimulated IL-1β, TNF-α, MCP-1 and IL-6 release were concentration-dependently inhibited by capsaicin. Modulation of IL-1β release was not TRPV1 mediated. Overall, these results show that functional TRPV1 channels are present in naïve monocytes and THP-1 cells, and when activated, increase cell metabolic activity. In addition, capsaicin modifies cytokine release from THP-1 cells and induces cell death, most likely by a mechanism that is independent of TRPV1 activation.


Publication title

Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology








School of Health Sciences


Academic Press Inc Elsevier Science

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© 2018 Elsevier Inc.

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Diagnosis of human diseases and conditions

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