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Lipoxin B4
IUPAC name 5S,14R,15S-Trihydroxy-6E,8Z,10E,12E -eicosatetraenoic acid
Other names LXB4
CAS number 92950-25-9
PubChem 5280915
Molecular formula C20H32O5
Molar mass 352.46508 g/mol
Except where noted otherwise, data are given for
materials in their standard state
(at 25 °C, 100 kPa)

Infobox disclaimer and references

  Lipoxins are a series of anti-inflammatory mediators. Lipoxins are short lived endogenously produced nonclassic eicosanoids whose appearance in inflammation signals the resolution of inflammation. They are abbreviated as LX, an acronym for lipoxygenase (LO) interaction products. At present two lipoxins have been identified; lipoxin A4 (LXA4) and lipoxin B4 (LXB4).



Lipoxins were first described by Serhan, Hamberg and Samuelsson in 1984.[1] They reported that the lipoxins stimulated superoxide anion (O2) generation and degranulation at submicromolar concentrations—as potent as LTB4.


Lipoxins are derived enzymatically from arachidonic acid, an ω-6 fatty acid. An analogous class, the resolvins, is derived from EPA and DHA, ω-3 fatty acids.[1] Another analogous class, the epi-lipoxins, is formed by non-enzymatic peroxidation.

Biological activity

Lipoxins, as well as certain peptides, are high affinity ligands for the lipoxin A4 receptor (LXA4R), which was first identified based on sequence homology as the formyl peptide receptor like receptor (FPRL1). Lipoxin signaling through the LXA4R inhibits chemotaxis, transmigration, superoxide generation and NF-κB activation.[2]

Conversely, peptide signaling through the same receptor, in vitro, has been shown to stimulate chemotaxis of polymorphonuclear cells (PMNs) and calcium mobilization.[2] The peptides that have ALXR affinity tend to be signals for leukocyte migration and subsequent phagocytosis such as acute phase proteins, bacterial peptides, HIV envelope proteins and neurotoxic peptides.

Similarly to the leukotrienes, LXA4 will form the cysteinyl-lipoxins LXC4, LXD4 and LXE4.[3] At subnanomolar concentrations, LXA4 and LXB4 inhibit leukotriene-stimulated interactions of human neutrophils and endothelial cells.[4]

Lipoxins are high affinity antagonists to the cysteinyl leukotriene receptor type 1 (CysLT1) to which several leukotrienes (LTC4, LTD4 and LTE4) mediate their smooth muscle contraction and eosinophil chemotactic effects. The CysLT1 receptor is also the site of action for the asthma drug montelukast (Singulair®).[5]

In resolution

During inflammation, cells die by apoptosis. As part of resolution, lipoxins signal macrophages to the remains of these cells (phagocytosis).[6] During the acute inflammatory process, the proinflammatory cytokines such as IFN-γ and IL-1β can induce the expression of anti-inflammatory mediators such as lipoxins and IL-4, which promote the resolution phase of inflammation.[7]

Lipoxin analogues

Stable synthetic analogues of LXs and aspirin-triggered 15-epi-LXA4s (ATLs) can mimic many of the desirable anti-inflammatory, "pro-resolution" actions of native LXs.[8]


  1. ^ a b Charles N. Serhan, Mats Hamberg, and Bengt Samuelsson (September 1, 1984). Lipoxins: Novel Series of Biologically Active Compounds Formed from Arachidonic Acid in Human Leukocytes (pdf). Retrieved on February 2, 2006. Original description of lipoxins.
  2. ^ a b Chiang N., Arita M., and Serhan CN. (2005). Anti-inflammatory circuitry: Lipoxin, aspirin-triggered lipoxins and their receptor ALX. Retrieved on April 28, 2006.
  3. ^ Powell WS, Chung D, Gravel S (1995). "5-Oxo-6,8,11,14-eicosatetraenoic acid is a potent stimulator of human eosinophil migration". J. Immunol. 154 (8): 4123–32. PMID 7706749.
  4. ^ Papayianni A, Serhan CN, Brady HR (1996). "Lipoxin A4 and B4 inhibit leukotriene-stimulated interactions of human neutrophils and endothelial cells". J. Immunol. 156 (6): 2264–72. PMID 8690917. Retrieved on 2007-11-01.
  5. ^ Drazen J., Israel E., and O'Byrne P. (1999). "Treatment of Asthma with Drugs Modifying the Leukotriene Pathway". PMID 9895400. Retrieved on 2006-04-28.
  6. ^ Mitchell S, Thomas G, Harvey K, et al (2002). "Lipoxins, aspirin-triggered epi-lipoxins, lipoxin stable analogues, and the resolution of inflammation: stimulation of macrophage phagocytosis of apoptotic neutrophils in vivo". J. Am. Soc. Nephrol. 13 (10): 2497–507. PMID 12239238.
  7. ^ McMahon, Blaithin and Godson, Catherine. Lipoxins: endogenous regulators of inflammation. Retrieved on February 7, 2006. Invited review article.
  8. ^ McMahon B, Mitchell S, Brady HR (2001). "Lipoxins: revelations on resolution". Trends Pharmacol. Sci. 22 (8): 391–5. doi:10.1016/S0165-6147(00)01771-5. PMID 11478982.
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Lipoxin". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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