Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.524, No.2, 371-377, 2020
Osteopontin heptamer peptide containing the RGD motif enhances the phagocytic function of microglia
Osteopontin (OPN) is a phosphorylated glycoprotein expressed in various tissues, including brain, and mediates a wide range of cellular activities. In our previous studies, we reported recombinant OPN and RGD and SLAY-containing OPN-peptide icosamer (OPNpt20) exhibited robust neuroprotective activities in an animal model of transient focal ischemia, and attributed these effects to the anti-inflammatory, pro-angiogenic, and phagocytic functions of OPNpt20. In the present study, we truncated OPNpt20 to 13 or 7 amino acid peptides containing RGD (R) and/or SLAY (S) motif (OPNpt13RS, OPNpt7R, OPNpt7RS, and OPNpt7S) and their cell motility and migration inducing activities were examined in BV2 cells (a microglia cell line). All four peptides significantly enhanced BV2 cell motility and migration, but OPNpt7R, an RGD-containing 7-amino-acid OPN peptide (VPNGRGD), was found to be most potent and its potency was comparable to OPNpt20. Phagocytic activity and F-actin polymerization were also significantly enhanced in OPNpt7R-treated BV2 cells. Importantly, studies using two mutant peptides (OPNpt7R-RAA and OPNpt7R-RAD, wherein RGD in OPNpt7R was replaced with RAA or RAD, respectively) revealed that all these effects of OPNpt7R, motility, migration, F-actin polymerization, and phagocytosis induction, were RGD-dependent. Furthermore, the Erk, Fak, and Akt signaling pathways appeared to be involved in the induction of phagocytic activity by OPNpt7R. Co-treating cells with OPNpt7R and D98059 or wortmannin (pharmacological inhibitors of Erk and Akt, respectively) significantly suppressed OPNpt7R-mediated phagocytosis induction. These results indicate the RGD-containing OPN heptamer OPNpt7R triggers microglial motility, migration, and phagocytic activity and that the RGD motif plays a critical role in these activities. (C) 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.