Dysregulated human monocytes/macrophages can synthesize and secrete matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), which play important roles in the progression of sepsis. In this study, we investigated the effects and mechanism of a novel histone deacetylase (HDAC8) inhibitor, (E)-N-hydroxy-4-methoxy-2-(biphenyl-4-yl)cinnamide (WK2-16), on MMP-9 production and activation in stimulated human monocytic THP-1 cells. Our results demonstrated that the acetylation level of structural maintenance of chromosomes 3 (SMC3) was up-regulated by WK2-16 in THP-1 cells. Consistently, an in vitro enzyme study demonstrated that WK2-16 selectively inhibited HDAC8 activity. Moreover, the WK2-16 concentration dependently suppressed MMP-9-mediated gelatinolysis induced by tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) or lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Additionally, WK2-16 significantly inhibited both MMP-9 protein and mRNA expression without cellular toxicity. Nevertheless, WK2-16 suppressed the extracellular levels of interleukin (IL)-6 from LPS-stimulated THP-1 cells. For the signaling studies, WK2-16 had no effect on LPS/TLR4 downstream signaling pathways, such as the NF-κB and ERK/JNK/P38 MAPK pathways. On the other hand, WK2-16 enhanced the recruitment of acetylated Yin Yang 1 (YY1) with HDAC1. Finally, in vivo studies indicated that WK2-16 could reduce the serum levels of TNF-α and IL-6 in endotoxemic mice. These results suggested that HDAC8 inhibition might provide a novel therapeutic strategy of hypercytokinemia in sepsis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1394
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2017


  • Endotoxemia
  • Histone deacetylase
  • Lipopolysaccharide (LPS)
  • Matrix metalloproteinases-9 (MMP-9)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Spectroscopy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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