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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Preconditioning-induced activation of ERK5 is dependent on moderate Ca(2+) influx via NMDA receptors and contributes to ischemic tolerance in the hippocampal CA1 region of rats.

Accumulating evidence implicates activation (phosphorylation) of mitogen-activated protein kinases ( MAPK) during nonlethal ischemic preconditioning in the protection of hippocampal CA1 neuron against subsequent ischemic events. In this paper, we undertook to identify the role of extracellular signal regulated kinase (ERK) 5 in cerebral ischemic preconditioning (CIP). Three minutes of ischemia was induced as preconditioning stimulus. Three days later, 6 min of ischemia was induced. The levels of ERK5 protein expression and its activation were detected with or without the CIP in hippocampal CA1 and the dentate gyrus (DG) regions. Our results showed that ERK5 was activated selectively in hippocampal CA1 region with, but not without, the ischemic preconditioning. Notably, during the later phase of reperfusion, the rise in ERK5 activation was strong and persistent with a peak occurring at the third day. The activation peak was effectively prevented and ERK5 protein expression was significantly decreased by intracerebroventricular infusion of ERK5 antisense oligonucleotide (every 24 h for 3 days before the preconditioning), but not by sense oligonucleotide or vehicle. Subsequently, the CA1 neuronal loss was largely elevated. Moreover, both MK801 (10 muM), an antagonist of NMDA receptor, and EGTA (100 mM, but neither 50 nor 150 mM), an extracellular Ca(2+) chelator, not only effectively inhibited the ERK5 activation but also markedly abolished CIP- induced survival of the CA1 neurons. These results suggested that activation of the ERK5 pathway by CIP was at least partly dependent on moderate Ca(2+) influx via NMDA receptor, which might contribute to ischemic tolerance in hippocampal CA1 region of rats.[1]


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