Antimicrobial peptide LL-37 is upregulated in chronic nasal inflammatory disease

Seon Tae Kim, Heung Eog Cha, Dong Young Kim, Gyu Cheol Han, Yoo Sam Chung, Young Jae Lee, You Jin Hwang, Heung Man Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


Objective - LL-37 is one of the antimicrobial peptides and the only member of the cathelicidin family identified so far in humans. We attempted to find a correlation between LL-37 peptide and inflammation of the nasal mucosa. Material and methods - Nasal mucosa specimens were obtained from 15 chronic infective rhinitis patients and 6 normal controls. Immunohistochemical staining was used to examine the localization of LL-37 and reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) was used to determine the levels of LL-37, IL-1β and IL-8 in tissue. Results - LL-37 peptide was primarily localized in the surface of the epithelia, in the serous and mucous cells of the submucosal glands and in stromal inflammatory cells. The number of LL-37 immunoreactive cells in inflammatory nasal mucosa was significantly increased compared with normal nasal tissue. Using RT-PCR, LL-37 mRNA was detected in 3/6 normal turbinate samples but in all cases with inflammatory nasal tissues. IL-1β and IL-8 transcripts exhibited a similar pattern to that of LL-37. Conclusions - We suggest that LL-37 is one of the antimicrobial peptides found in human nasal mucosa and that it participates in the innate immune system of the nasal mucosa.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-85
Number of pages5
JournalActa Oto-Laryngologica
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Antimicrobial peptide
  • LL-37
  • Nose
  • Pro-inflammatory cytokines

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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