Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.523, No.3, 719-725, 2020
Knockdown of macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF), a novel target to protect neurons from parthanatos induced by simulated post-spinal cord injury oxidative stress
Parthanatos is a form of regulated cell death (RCD) that is closely linked to DNA damage, which is a common consequence of oxidative stress due to central nervous trauma, such as spinal cord injury (SCI). The mechanism by which apoptosis-inducing factor (AIF) mediates DNA strand breaks in parthanatos was not clear until the discovery of the nuclease function of MIF. A previous study suggested that observed results may not be reliable if the oxidative stress induced in cells observed under experimental pathological conditions does not accurately replicate the specific pathologies being studied. According to an earlier direct measurement of extracellular oxidative stress in a rat SCI model, post-SCI oxidative stress was approximately the same as exposure to 150 mu M H2O2. However, this concentration has been reported as sublethal oxidative stress in other cell types related to senescence, apoptosis, and parthanatos. Using sublethal H2O2 concentrations to induce oxidative stress is equivocal. Also, different cell types have diverse tolerances and responses to oxidative stress, and, therefore, exposure to H2O2. To avoid these limitations, the present study explored the mechanism of neuronal death under this simulated post-SCI oxidative stress and determined the effects of MIF knockdown in parthanatos associated with SCI. Immunofluorescence and flow cytometry were used to reveal typical characteristics of parthanatos that were blocked by PARP-1 inhibitors but not caspase inhibitors. In addition to classic features like PARP-1 and caspase-3 cleavage that were absent, we determined that parthanatos instead of apoptosis played a major role in the cell death caused by oxidative stress following SCI. Flow cytometry analysis of cells transfected by adenovirus with MIF-shRNA then exposed to H2O2 showed a significant decrease in cell death for MIF knockdown cells, even after AIF nuclear translocation. The comet assay also displayed significantly fewer DNA strand breaks after MIF knockdown. This is the first study has verified that MIF knockdown enables to protect neurons from parthanatos under a simulated in vivo oxidative stress following SCI. It suggests that MIF knockdown is a promising therapy to rescue neurons suffering from oxidative stress-induced SCI pathology. (C) 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.