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Increased Heat Shock Protein 72 Expression in Celiac Disease

Sziksz, Erna; Veres, Gábor*; Vannay, Ádám; Prókai, Ágnes*; Gál, Krisztina*; Ónody, Anna*; Korponay-Szabó, Ilma Rita; Reusz, György*; Szabó, András*; Tulassay, Tivadar*; Arató, András*; Szebeni, Beáta

Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition: November 2010 - Volume 51 - Issue 5 - p 573–578
doi: 10.1097/MPG.0b013e3181ea0092
Original Articles: Gastroenterology

Background and Objectives: Heat shock protein (HSP) 72, a known chaperone, has potential epithelial barrier protecting, antiapoptotic, and immune system regulatory effects; therefore, our aim was to study its involvement in the pathology of celiac disease (CD).

Patients and Methods: Duodenal biopsy specimens were collected from children with untreated and treated CD and from controls. mRNA expression, protein level, and localization of HSP72 were determined.

Results: Elevated HSP72 mRNA expression and higher protein levels were found in the duodenal mucosa of children with untreated CD as well as in children with treated CD compared with those in controls. In the duodenal mucosa of children with treated CD, HSP72 mRNA expression was decreased and HSP72 protein levels were lower than those in children with untreated CD. We detected intensive HSP72 staining in the villous enterocytes and immune cells of the lamina propria in the duodenal villi of children with untreated CD compared with that in controls.

Conclusions: The increased expression and altered localization of HSP72 in CD indicate that HSP72 should have a role in protection against gliadin-induced cytotoxicity. HSP72 may exert antiapoptotic effect and contribute to preservation of intestinal epithelial barrier integrity. Moreover, HSP72 as a ligand of TLR2 and TLR4 may promote innate immune responses and warn the cells of the potential injury.

*First Department of Pediatrics, Semmelweis University, Hungary

Department of Gastroenterology-Nephrology, Heim Pal Children's Hospital, Hungary

Research Group for Pediatrics and Nephrology, Semmelweis University and Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary.

Received 15 September, 2009

Accepted 27 May, 2010

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Erna Sziksz, Research Group for Pediatrics and Nephrology, Semmelweis University and Hungarian Academy of Sciences, H-1083 Budapest, Bókay J. u. 53-54, Hungary (e-mail:

Erna Sziksz and Gábor Veres contributed equally to this work.

This work was supported by funds from the Hungarian National Scientific Research Foundation grant (OTKA 71730, T046082, OTKA-K81117) and grant of the Ministry of Health (ETT 435/2006; ETT- 028-02), and TÁMOP-4.2.2-08/1/KMR-2008-0004.

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

Copyright 2010 by ESPGHAN and NASPGHAN