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Anti-inflammatory effects of resolvin-D1 on human corneal epithelial cells: in vitro study

Nir Erdinest1, Haim Ovadia2, Ran Kormas1 and Abraham Solomon13*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Ophthalmology, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Jerusalem, Israel

2 Department of Neurology, The Agnes Ginges Center for Human Neurogenetics, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Jerusalem, Israel

3 Cornea & Refractive Surgery Service, Department of Ophthalmology, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center, Jerusalem 91120, Israel

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Journal of Inflammation 2014, 11:6  doi:10.1186/1476-9255-11-6

Published: 2 March 2014



This study evaluated the anti-inflammatory effects of Resolvin-D1 (RV-D1) and its mechanism of action in human corneal epithelial (HCE) cells.


HCE cells were incubated with different concentrations of RV-D1 for different time periods. Oleic acid (OA) and Dexamethasone (DM) served as negative and positive controls, respectively. Cells were stimulated with polyriboinosinic:polyribocytidylic acids (poly I:C). The protein contents and mRNA expression levels of Tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), Interleukin (IL)-6, IL-1β and IL-8 were evaluated with multiplex fluorescent bead immunoassay (FBI) and real time-PCR, respectively. In addition, the expression of inhibitory factor-κBα (I-κBα) was evaluated with real time-PCR.


The protein level of pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF-α, IL-6, IL-1β and IL-8 significantly increased after stimulation with Poly I:C. RV-D1 treatment at concentration of 1 μM decreased the protein level of TNF-α to 20.76 ± 9.3% (P < 0.05), IL-6 to 43.54 ± 14.16% (P < 0.001), IL-1β to 46.73 ± 15.93% (P > 0.05) and IL-8 to 51.15 ± 13.01% (P < 0.05) compared with cells stimulated with poly I:C alone. Similarly, the mRNA levels of TNF-α, IL-6, IL-1β and IL-8 were significantly reduced after treatment with RV-D1. A highly significant dose response curve was demonstrated for RV-D1 treated HCE cells for TNF-α and IL-1β.

DM treatment decreased the protein content for all of the pro-inflammatory cytokines, similar results were demonstrated at the mRNA level. The anti-inflammatory effects of RV-D1 were similar to those of DM for TNF-α, IL-6 and IL-8.


RV-D1 may serve as a potent anti-inflammatory agent in ocular surface inflammation, as evaluated in cultured HCE cells. The anti-inflammatory effects of RV-D1 were comparable to those of DM, and were mediated through nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) signal transduction.

Resolvin-D1; Polyunsaturated fatty acids; Corneal epithelium; Anti-inflammatory; Cytokines; Cornea