Pentraxins are a superfamily of fluid phase pattern recognition molecules conserved in evolution and characterized by a cyclic multimeric structure. C-reactive protein (CRP) and serum amyloid P component (SAP) constitute the short pentraxin arm of the superfamily. CRP and SAP are produced in the liver in response to IL-6 and are acute phase reactants in humans and mice respectively. In addition SAP has been shown to affect tissue remodelling and fibrosis by stabilizing all types of amyloid fibrils and by regulating monocyte to fibrocyte differentiation. Pentraxin 3 (PTX3) is the prototype of the long pentraxin arm. Gene targeted mice and genetic and epigenetic studies in humans suggest that PTX3 plays essential non-redundant roles in innate immunity and inflammation as well as in tissue remodelling. Recent studies have revealed the role of PTX3 as extrinsic oncosuppressor, able to tune cancer-related inflammation. In addition, at acidic pH PTX3 can interact with provisional matrix components promoting inflammatory matrix remodelling. Thus acidification during tissue repair sets PTX3 in a tissue remodelling and repair mode, suggesting that matrix and microbial recognition are common, ancestral features of the humoral arm of innate immunity.
- Clinical biomarker
- Innate immunity
- Pattern recognition molecules
ASJC Scopus subject areas