Eosinophilic esophagitis is a chronic inflammatory condition that has been linked to food allergies. Recent genome-wide association studies have identified variations of the gene encoding calpain 14 (CAPN14) that are prevalent in EoE. However, the contribution of CAPN14 to disease development is not known. In the latest issue of JCI Insight, Marc Rothenberg and colleagues at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center demonstrate that CAPN14 mediates inflammation-induced remodeling of the cells lining the esophagus. CAPN14 expression was elevated in esophageal biopsies from EoE patients compared to biopsies from healthy individuals. Additionally, the inflammatory molecule IL-13 potently induced CAPN14 expression in esophageal epithelial cells, and CAPN14 overexpression impaired epithelial barrier function and resulted in loss of the tight junction protein desmoglein 1. The results of this study provide important insight into the role of CAPN14 in the development of EoE.
Eosinophilic esophagitis-linked calpain 14 is an IL-13-induced protease that mediates esophageal epithelial barrier impairment
Marc E. Rothenberg
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
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