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Targeting MAPK phosphorylation of Connexin43 provides neuroprotection in stroke

Tijdschriftbijdrage - Tijdschriftartikel

Connexin43 (Cx43) function is influenced by kinases that phosphorylate specific serine sites located near its C-terminus. Stroke is a powerful inducer of kinase activity, but its effect on Cx43 is unknown. We investigated the impact of wild-type (WT) and knock-in Cx43 with serine to alanine mutations at the protein kinase C (PKC) site Cx43(S368A), the casein kinase 1 (CK1) sites Cx43(S325A/328Y/330A), and the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) sites Cx43(S255/262/279/282A) (MK4) on a permanent middle cerebral artery occlusion (pMCAO) stroke model. We demonstrate that MK4 transgenic animals exhibit a significant decrease in infarct volume that was associated with improvement in behavioral performance. An increase in astrocyte reactivity with a concomitant decrease in microglial reactivity was observed in MK4 mice. In contrast to WT, MK4 astrocytes displayed reduced Cx43 hemichannel activity. Pharmacological blockade of Cx43 hemichannels with TAT-Gap19 also significantly decreased infarct volume in WT animals. This study provides novel molecular insights and charts new avenues for therapeutic intervention associated with Cx43 function.
Tijdschrift: Journal of Experimental Medicine
ISSN: 0022-1007
Issue: 4
Volume: 216
Pagina's: 916 - 935
Jaar van publicatie:2019
Trefwoorden:Immunologie, Experimentele geneeskunde