Clonorchis sinensis, a fluke dwelling in the intrahepatic bile ducts causes clonorchiasis, which affect about 15 million people wide-distributed in eastern Asia. During C. sinensis infection, worm-host interaction results in activation of patterns recognition receptors (PRRs) such as Toll-like receptors (TLRs) and further triggers immune responses, which determines the outcome of the infection. However, the mechanisms by which pathogen-associated molecules patterns from C. sinensis interact with TLRs were poorly understood. In the present study, we assumed that the molecules from C. sinensis may regulate host immune responses via TLR2 signaling pathway.
In the present study, we have identified a ~34 kDa CsHscB from C. sinensis which physically bound with TLR2 as demonstrated by molecular docking and pull-down assay. We also found that recombinant CsHscB (rCsHscB) potently activates macrophage to express various proteins including TLR2, CD80, MHCII, and cytokines like IL-6, TNF-α, and IL-10, but rCsHscB failed to induce IL-10 in macrophages from Tlr2-/- mice. Moreover, ERK1/2 activation was required for rCsHscB-induced IL-10 production in macrophages. In vivo study revealed that rCsHscB triggered a high production of IL-10 in the wild-type (WT) but not in Tlr2-/- mice. Consistently, the phosphorylation of ERK1/2 was also attenuated in Tlr2-/- mice compared to the WT mice, after the treatment with rCsHscB.
Our data thus demonstrate that rCsHscB from C. sinensis interacts with TLR2 to be endowed with immune regulatory activities, and may have some therapeutic implications in future beyond parasitology.