NOX2 beta: A novel splice variant of NOX2 that regulates NADPH oxidase activity in macrophages

Craig B Harrison, Stavros Selemidis, Elizabeth Guida, Paul T King, Christopher G Sobey, Grant R Drummond

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Nox2 oxidase is one isoform in a family of seven NADPH oxidases that generate reactive oxygen species (ROS) and thereby contribute to physiological and pathological processes including host defense, redox signaling and oxidative tissue damage. While alternative mRNA splicing has been shown to influence the activity of several Nox-family proteins, functionally relevant splice variants of Nox2 have not previously been identified. We immunoscreened several mouse tissues and cells for the presence of truncated Nox2 proteins and identified a 30 kDa protein in lung, spleen and macrophages. RT-PCR analysis of mRNA from primary and immortalised (RAW264.7) mouse macrophages, and from human alveolar macrophages, identified a truncated Nox2 transcript which, upon sequence analysis, was found to be a product of the exon skipping mode of alternative splicing, lacking exons 4-10 of the Nox2 gene. The predicted protein is comparable in size to that identified by immunoscreening and contains two transmembrane helices and an extended cytosolic C-terminus with binding sites for NADPH and the Nox organiser protein p47phox. Importantly, selective siRNA-mediated knockdown of the transcript reduced expression of the 30 kDa protein in macrophages, and suppressed phorbol ester-stimulated ROS production by 50 . We thus provide the first evidence that Nox2 undergoes alternative mRNA splicing to yield a 30 kDa protein - herein termed Nox2beta - that regulates NADPH oxidase activity in macrophages from mice and humans. The discovery of Nox2beta paves the way for future examination of its role in physiological and pathological processes.
Original languageEnglish
Article number e48326
Number of pages14
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Cite this