Radiation-Induced c-Jun Activation Depends on MEK1-ERK1/2 Signaling Pathway in Microglial Cells
by Zhiyong Deng, Guangchao Sui, Paulo Mottin Rosa, Weiling Zhao
Radiation-induced normal brain injury is associated with acute and/or chronic inflammatory responses, and has been a major concern in radiotherapy. Recent studies suggest that microglial activation is a potential contributor to chronic inflammatory responses following irradiation; however, the molecular mechanism underlying the response of microglia to radiation is poorly understood. c-Jun, a component of AP-1 transcription factors, potentially regulates neural cell death and neuroinflammation. We observed a rapid increase in phosphorylation of N-terminal c-Jun (on serine 63 and 73) and MAPK kinases ERK1/2, but not JNKs, in irradiated murine microglial BV2 cells. Radiation-induced c-Jun phosphorylation is dependent on the canonical MEK-ERK signaling pathway and required for both ERK1 and ERK2 function. ERK1/2 directly interact with c-Jun in vitro and in cells; meanwhile, the JNK binding domain on c-Jun is not required for its interaction with ERK kinases. Radiation-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) potentially contribute to c-Jun phosphorylation through activating the ERK pathway. Radiation stimulates c-Jun transcriptional activity and upregulates c-Jun-regulated proinflammatory genes, such as tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukin-1β, and cyclooxygenase-2. Pharmacologic blockade of the ERK signaling pathway interferes with c-Jun activity and inhibits radiation-stimulated expression of c-Jun target genes. Overall, our study reveals that the MEK-ERK1/2 signaling pathway, but not the JNK pathway, contributes to the c-Jun-dependent microglial inflammatory response following irradiation.
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Syndicated from:PLoS ONE
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