IPSE, a urogenital parasite-derived immunomodulatory protein, ameliorates ifosfamide-induced hemorrhagic cystitis through downregulation of pro-inflammatory pathways

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



Scientific Reports








© 2019, The Author(s). Ifosfamide and other oxazaphosphorines can result in hemorrhagic cystitis, a constellation of complications caused by acrolein metabolites. We previously showed that a single dose of IPSE (Interleukin-4-inducing principle from Schistosoma eggs), a schistosome-derived host modulatory protein, can ameliorate ifosfamide-related cystitis; however, the mechanisms underlying this urotoxicity and its prevention are not fully understood. To provide insights into IPSE’s protective mechanism, we undertook transcriptional profiling of bladders from ifosfamide-treated mice, with or without pretreatment with IPSE or IPSE-NLS (a mutant of IPSE lacking nuclear localization sequence). Ifosfamide treatment upregulated a range of proinflammatory genes. The IL-1β-TNFα-IL-6 proinflammatory cascade via NFκB and STAT3 pathways was identified as the key driver of inflammation. The NRF2-mediated oxidative stress response pathway, which regulates heme homoeostasis and expression of antioxidant enzymes, was highly activated. Anti-inflammatory cascades, namely Wnt, Hedgehog and PPAR pathways, were downregulated. IPSE drove significant downregulation of major proinflammatory pathways including the IL-1β-TNFα-IL-6 pathways, interferon signaling, and reduction in oxidative stress. IPSE-NLS reduced inflammation but not oxidative stress. Taken together, we have identified signatures of acute-phase inflammation and oxidative stress in ifosfamide-injured bladder, which are reversed by pretreatment with IPSE. This work revealed several pathways that could be therapeutically targeted to prevent ifosfamide-induced hemorrhagic cystitis.

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