Sphingosine kinase 1 is required for myristate-induced TNFα expression in intestinal epithelial cells

Songhwa Choi, Justin M. Snider, Chris P. Cariello, Johana M. Lambert, Andrea K. Anderson, L. Ashley Cowart, Ashley J. Snider

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Saturated fatty acids (SFA) have been known to trigger inflammatory signaling in metabolic tissues; however, the effects of specific SFAs in the intestinal epithelium have not been well studied. Several previous studies have implicated disruptions in sphingolipid metabolism by oversupply of SFAs in inflammatory process. Also, our previous studies have implicated sphingosine kinase 1 (SK1) and its product sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) as having key roles in the regulation of inflammatory processes in the intestinal epithelium. Therefore, to define the role for specific SFAs in inflammatory responses in intestinal epithelial cells, we examined myristate (C14:0) and palmitate (C16:0). Myristate, but not palmitate, significantly induced the pro-inflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα), and it was SK1-dependent. Interestingly, myristate-induced TNFα expression was not suppressed by inhibition of S1P receptors (S1PRs), hinting at a potential novel intracellular target of S1P. Additionally, myristate regulated the expression of TNFα via JNK activation in an SK1-dependent manner, suggesting a novel S1PR-independent target as a mediator between SK1 and JNK in response to myristate. Lastly, a myristate-enriched milk fat-based diet (MFBD) increased expression of TNFα in colon tissues and elevated the S1P to sphingosine ratio, demonstrating the potential of myristate-involved pathobiologies in intestinal tissues. Taken together our studies suggest that myristate regulates the expression of TNFα in the intestinal epithelium via regulation of SK1 and JNK.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number106423
JournalProstaglandins and Other Lipid Mediators
StatePublished - Aug 2020


  • Intestinal inflammation
  • MAPK
  • Myristate
  • Saturated fatty acid
  • Sphingosine kinase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology
  • Pharmacology
  • Cell Biology


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