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Suzhou, China

Ren L.,Soochow University of China | Qian X.,Soochow University of China | Zhai L.,Soochow University of China | Sun M.,Soochow University of China | And 3 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

Major depression is becoming one of the most prevalent forms of psychiatric disorders. However, the mechanisms of major depression are still not well-understood. Most antidepressants are only effective in some patients and produce some serious side effects. Animal models of depression are therefore essential to unravel the mechanisms of depression and to develop novel therapeutic strategies. Our previous studies showed that Abelson helper integration site-1 (Ahi1) deficiency causes depression-like behaviors in mice. In this study, we characterized the biochemical and behavioral changes in Ahi1 knockout (KO) mice. In Ahi1 KO mice, neurotransmitters including serotonin and dopamine were significantly decreased in different brain regions. However, glutamate and GABA levels were not affected by Ahi1 deficiency. The antidepressant imipramine attenuated depressive behaviors and partially restored brain serotonin level in Ahi1 KO mice. Our findings suggest that Ahi1 KO mice can be used for studying the mechanisms of depression and screening therapeutic targets. © 2014 Ren et al.

Du G.,Soochow University of China | Tu H.,Soochow University of China | Li X.,Soochow University of China | Pei A.,Soochow University of China | And 7 more authors.
Neurochemical Research | Year: 2014

Daphnetin (DAP), a coumarin derivative, has been reported to have multiple pharmacological actions including analgesia, antimalarial, anti-arthritic, and anti-pyretic properties. It is unclear whether DAP has neuroprotective effects on ischemic brain injury. In this study, we found that DAP treatment (i.c.v.) reduced the infarct volume at 24 h after ischemia/reperfusion injury and improved neurological behaviors in a middle cerebral artery occlusion mouse model. Moreover, we provided evidences that DAP had protective effects on infarct volume in neonate rats even it was administrated at 4 h after cerebral hypoxia/ischemia injury. To explore its neuroprotective mechanisms of DAP, we examined the protection of DAP on glutamate toxicity-induced cell death in hippocampal HT-22 cells. Our results demonstrated that DAP protected against glutamate toxicity in HT-22 cells in a concentration-dependent manner. Further, we found that DAP maintained the cellular levels of glutathione and superoxide dismutase activity, suggesting the anti-oxidatant activity of DAP. Since DAP has been used for the treatment of coagulation disorder and rheumatoid arthritis for long time with a safety profile, DAP will be a promising agent for the treatment of stroke. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.

Huang C.,Nantong University | Wu J.,Suzhou Kowloon Hospital | Liao R.,Nantong University | Zhang W.,Nantong University
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) is a member of the mitogen-activated protein kinase family. It can mediate cell migration. Classical dopamine receptor-mediated ERK1/2 phosphorylation is widely studied in neurons. Here, we report that ERK1/2 phosphorylation is also modulated by putative phosphatidylinositol-linked D1-like receptors in cultured rat astrocytes. 6-chloro-7,8-dihydroxy-3-methyl-1-(3-methylphenyl)-2,3,4,5-tetrahydro-1H-3-benzazepine (SKF83959), an agonist of the putative phosphatidylinositol-linked D1-like receptors, was found to enhance ERK1/2 phosphorylation, which then promoted the migration of cultured astrocytes. The SKF83959-induced ERK1/2 phosphorylation was found to be Ca2+-independent based on the following observations: i. chelating intracellular Ca2+ did not inhibit ERK1/2 phosphorylation and astrocyte migration; ii. blockage of the release of intracellular Ca2+ from the endoplasmic reticulum by an inhibitor of inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3) receptor did not attenuate ERK1/2 phosphorylation. However, inhibition of phospholipase C (PLC), the upstream molecule of internal Ca2+ release, disabled SKF83959's ability to elevate the level of ERK1/2 phosphorylation. Both non-selective protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor and PKCδ selective inhibitor prevented ERK1/2 phosphorylation increase and astrocyte migration, but PKCα inhibitor did not. This suggests that Ca2+-independent and diacylglycerol-dependent PKCδ acts downstream of putative phosphatidylinositol-linked D1-like receptor activation and mediates SKF83959-induced elevation of ERK1/2 phosphorylation in order to modulate astrocyte migration. In conclusion, our results demonstrate that SKF83959-induced increases in ERK1/2 phosphorylation and astrocyte migration are dependent on PLC-PKCδ signals. This might help us to further understand the functions of the putative phosphatidylinositol-linked D1-like receptors in the nervous system. © 2012 Huang et al.

Gong J.,Suzhou Kowloon Hospital | Gong J.,Zhejiang University | Li J.,Zhejiang University | Liang H.,Zhejiang University
Internal Medicine | Year: 2011

A 23-year-old woman presented with trigeminal neuralgia four months after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) for acute myeloblastic leukemia. No leukemic cells were found in the cerebrospinal fluid. Initial brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) did not reveal any abnormality. After symptom exacerbation with diplopia, second MRI showed an irregular mass at the right petrous apex, with uniform enhancement and a clear margin which was interpreted as a meningioma. The pathology and immunohistochemistry finally confirmed the diagnosis of granulocytic sarcoma. This case suggests that granulocytic sarcoma should be remembered as a very rare and a malignant pathology in the differential diagnosis of neurologic complications following HSCT.

Tan X.,Soochow University of China | Chen Y.,Soochow University of China | Li J.,Suzhou Kowloon Hospital | Li X.,Soochow University of China | And 6 more authors.
Neuroscience | Year: 2015

Recent studies indicate that over-activation of Cdk5 is a crucial pro-death signal and Cdk5 activity inhibition provides neuroprotection in animal stroke models. However, Cdk5 inhibitors are reported to affect physiological functions of Cdk5 and lead to serious side effects. Therefore, targeting Cdk5 or its activators without affecting physiological functions of Cdk5 is a therapeutic strategy for ischemic brain injury. In this study, we examined Cdk5 activity in a rat hypoxia/ischemia (HI) injury model. Cdk5 expression was not changed after HI injury, but Cdk5 activity significantly increased, which was demonstrated by the increased phorsphorylation-phosphorylation of Tau and glucocorticoid receptor (GR), two downstream signals of Cdk5. We further showed that the levels of Cdk5 activators p35 and p39 decreased after HI injury, while p25, which is converted from p35 and has a higher activator activity on Cdk5, increased markedly after HI injury. P5, a 24-residue mimetic peptide of p35, was reported to specifically inhibit the p25/Cdk5 signal pathway in an Alzheimer's disease model. P5-TAT, which can cross the blood-brain barrier and cell membrane facilitated by TAT protein, was used in our study. We found that p5-TAT treatment did not change the levels of p35, p39, and p25, but reduced the phorsphorylation of Tau and GR, suggesting the inhibition of the p25/Cdk5 by the peptide p5-TAT. This was supported by the fact that p5 interacted with Cdk5, but not with Cdk5 activators. In addition, p5-TAT reduced cleaved caspase-3 level, a marker of neuronal apoptosis. We further demonstrated that p5-TAT pre-treatment reduced cerebral infarct volume; even when p5-TAT was delayed to be administered at 24. h after HI injury, p5-TAT still promoted long-term functional recovery. Therefore, Cdk5 inhibition by the small peptide p5-TAT or its derivatives is a promising therapeutic strategy for the treatment of ischemic brain injury including hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy and stroke. © 2015 IBRO.

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