Protective Effects and Mechanisms of -Phenethyl Caffeamide from UVA-Induced Skin Damage in Human Epidermal Keratinocytes through Nrf2/HO-1 Regulation
Chu Y, Wu PY, Chen CW, Lyu JL, Liu YJ, Wen KC, Lin CY, Kuo YH and Chiang HM
The skin provides an effective barrier against physical, chemical, and microbial invasion; however, overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation causes excessive cellular oxidative stress, which leads to skin damage, DNA damage, mutations, and skin cancer. This study investigated the protective effects of -phenethyl caffeamide (K36) from UVA damage on human epidermal keratinocytes. We found that K36 reduced UVA-induced intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and induced the expression of the intrinsic antioxidant enzyme heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) by increasing the translocation of nuclear factor erythroid 2⁻related factor 2 (Nrf2). K36 could inhibit the phosphorylation of extracellular-signal-regulated kinase (ERK) and c-Jun N-terminal kinases (JNK) and reduce UVA-induced matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-1 and MMP-2 overexpression; it could also elevate the expression of tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinases (TIMP). In addition, K36 ameliorated 8-hydroxy-2'-deoxyguanosine (8-OHdG) induced by UVA irradiation. Furthermore, K36 could downregulate the expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) and the subsequent production of nitric oxide (NO) and prostaglandin E₂ (PGE₂). Based on our findings, K36 possessed potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiphotodamage, and even antiphotocarcinogenesis activities. Thus, K36 has the potential to be used to multifunctional skin care products and drugs.
Therapeutic targeting of the NRF2 and KEAP1 partnership in chronic diseases
Cuadrado A, Rojo AI, Wells G, Hayes JD, Cousin SP, Rumsey WL, Attucks OC, Franklin S, Levonen AL, Kensler TW and Dinkova-Kostova AT
The transcription factor NF-E2 p45-related factor 2 (NRF2; encoded by NFE2L2) and its principal negative regulator, the E3 ligase adaptor Kelch-like ECH-associated protein 1 (KEAP1), are critical in the maintenance of redox, metabolic and protein homeostasis, as well as the regulation of inflammation. Thus, NRF2 activation provides cytoprotection against numerous pathologies including chronic diseases of the lung and liver; autoimmune, neurodegenerative and metabolic disorders; and cancer initiation. One NRF2 activator has received clinical approval and several electrophilic modifiers of the cysteine-based sensor KEAP1 and inhibitors of its interaction with NRF2 are now in clinical development. However, challenges regarding target specificity, pharmacodynamic properties, efficacy and safety remain.
Enhancement of the gut barrier integrity by a microbial metabolite through the Nrf2 pathway
Singh R, Chandrashekharappa S, Bodduluri SR, Baby BV, Hegde B, Kotla NG, Hiwale AA, Saiyed T, Patel P, Vijay-Kumar M, Langille MGI, Douglas GM, Cheng X, Rouchka EC, Waigel SJ, Dryden GW, Alatassi H, Zhang HG, Haribabu B, Vemula PK and Jala VR
The importance of gut microbiota in human health and pathophysiology is undisputable. Despite the abundance of metagenomics data, the functional dynamics of gut microbiota in human health and disease remain elusive. Urolithin A (UroA), a major microbial metabolite derived from polyphenolics of berries and pomegranate fruits displays anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidative, and anti-ageing activities. Here, we show that UroA and its potent synthetic analogue (UAS03) significantly enhance gut barrier function and inhibit unwarranted inflammation. We demonstrate that UroA and UAS03 exert their barrier functions through activation of aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR)- nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2)-dependent pathways to upregulate epithelial tight junction proteins. Importantly, treatment with these compounds attenuated colitis in pre-clinical models by remedying barrier dysfunction in addition to anti-inflammatory activities. Cumulatively, the results highlight how microbial metabolites provide two-pronged beneficial activities at gut epithelium by enhancing barrier functions and reducing inflammation to protect from colonic diseases.
The Bcl-2 inhibitor venetoclax inhibits Nrf2 antioxidant pathway activation induced by hypomethylating agents in AML
Nguyen LXT, Troadec E, Kalvala A, Kumar B, Hoang DH, Viola D, Zhang B, Nguyen DQ, Aldoss I, Ghoda L, Budde E, Pichiorri F, Rosen S, Forman SJ, Marcucci G and Pullarkat V
Induction of reactive oxygen species (ROS), an important process for the cytotoxicity of various acute myeloid leukemia (AML) therapies including hypomethylating agents (HMAs), concurrently activates the NF-E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) antioxidant response pathway which in turn results in induction of antioxidant enzymes that neutralize ROS. In this study, we demonstrated that Nrf2 inhibition is an additional mechanism responsible for the marked antileukemic activity in AML seen with the combination of HMAs and venetoclax (ABT-199). HMA and venetoclax combined treatment augmented mitochondrial ROS induction and apoptosis compared with treatment HMA alone. Treatment of AML cell lines as well as primary AML cells with venetoclax disrupted HMA decitabine-increased nuclear translocation of Nrf2 and induction of downstream antioxidant enzymes including heme oxygenase-1 and NADP-quinone oxidoreductase-1. Venetoclax treatment also leads to dissociation of B-cell lymphoma 2 from the Nrf2/Keap-1 complex and targets Nrf2 to ubiquitination and proteasomal degradation. Thus, our results here demonstrated an undiscovered mechanism underlying synergistic effect of decitabine and venetoclax in AML cells, elucidating for impressive results in antileukemic activity against AML in preclinical and early clinical studies by combined treatment of these drugs.
Phytosomal curcumin elicits anti-tumor properties through suppression of angiogenesis, cell proliferation and induction of oxidative stress in colorectal cancer
Moradi-Marjaneh R, Hassanian SM, Rahmani F, Aghaee-Bakhtiari SH, Avan A and Khazaei M
Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the most common causes of cancer-associated mortality in the world. Anti-tumor effect of curcumin has been shown in different cancers; however, the therapeutic potential of novel phytosomal curcumin as well as the underlying molecular mechanism in CRC, has not been explored yet.
Brusatol inhibits amyloid-β-induced neurotoxicity in U-251 cells via regulating the Nrf2/HO-1 pathway
Liu X, Xu H, Zhang Y, Wang P and Gao W
Amyloid-β (Aβ) has been reported to cause oxidative damage of neurons leading to neurotoxicity in a variety of diseases and cancers. As an anticancer drug, brusatol (BR) has been shown to have potent cytotoxic effects on various cancer cell lines. In this study, the effect and mechanism of BR on Aβ-induced neurotoxicity was investigated in U-251 glioma cells. Using the MTT assay, the results suggest that BR ameliorated cell injury induced by Aβ in U-251 cells. After running Hoechst and Western blot assays, BR prevented cell apoptosis induced by Aβ in U-251 cells. In addition, BR inhibited the increased reactive oxygen species and mitochondrial membrane potential levels induced by Aβ in U-251 cells using the DCFH-DA and Rh123 method. Furthermore, BR induced the Nrf2/HO-1 pathway by inhibiting the PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathway to inhibit neurotoxicity elicited by Aβ. These results suggest that brustasol is a valuable potential antitumor drug available for chemotherapy.
Cellular and molecular mechanisms of curcumin in prevention and treatment of disease
Patel SS, Acharya A, Ray RS, Agrawal R, Raghuwanshi R and Jain P
Curcumin is a naturally occurring polyphenolic compound present in rhizome of Curcuma longa belonging to the family zingiberaceae. Growing experimental evidence revealed that curcumin exhibit multitarget biological implications signifying its crucial role in health and disease. The current review highlights the recent progress and mechanisms underlying the wide range of pharmacological effects of curcumin against numerous diseases like neuronal, cardiovascular, metabolic, kidney, endocrine, skin, respiratory, infectious, gastrointestinal diseases and cancer. The ability of curcumin to modulate the functions of multiple signal transductions are linked with attenuation of acute and chronic diseases. Numerous preclinical and clinical studies have revealed that curcumin modulates several molecules in cell signal transduction pathway including PI3K, Akt, mTOR, ERK5, AP-1, TGF-β, Wnt, β-catenin, Shh, PAK1, Rac1, STAT3, PPARγ, EBPα, NLRP3 inflammasome, p38MAPK, Nrf2, Notch-1, AMPK, TLR-4 and MyD-88. Curcumin has a potential to prevent and/or manage various diseases due to its anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and anti-apoptotic properties with an excellent safety profile. In contrast, the anti-cancer effects of curcumin are reflected due to induction of growth arrest and apoptosis in various premalignant and malignant cells. This review also carefully emphasized the pharmacokinetics of curcumin and its interaction with other drugs. Clinical studies have shown that curcumin is safe at the doses of 12 g/day but exhibits poor systemic bioavailability. The use of adjuvant like piperine, liposomal curcumin, curcumin nanoparticles and curcumin phospholipid complex has shown enhanced bioavailability and therapeutic potential. Further studies are warranted to prove the potential of curcumin against various ailments.
Activation of c-Met in cancer cells mediates growth-promoting signals against oxidative stress through Nrf2-HO-1
Chakraborty S, Balan M, Flynn E, Zurakowski D, Choueiri TK and Pal S
Any imbalance between reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation and the anti-oxidant capacity lead to cellular oxidative stress. Many chemotherapeutic agents mediate their cytotoxic functions through the generation of ROS. c-Met, a receptor tyrosine kinase, is over-expressed in renal cancer and plays very crucial role(s) in its growth and survival. Here, we show that c-Met activation protected renal cancer cells from ROS, oxidative stress and cytotoxicity induced by the anti-cancer agent sorafenib (used for renal cancer treatment); and it markedly attenuated sorafenib-induced DNA damage. Activated c-Met promoted the anti-apoptotic proteins (Bcl-2 and Bcl-xL) and inhibited apoptotic cleaved caspase-3. We found that the cytoprotective function of c-Met against sorafenib-induced ROS generation and apoptosis was mediated primarily through the activation of anti-oxidant Nrf2-HO-1. c-Met promoted the nuclear localization of Nrf2 and hindered its binding with the inhibitory protein Keap1. Silencing of Nrf2 attenuated the protective action of c-Met against sorafenib-induced oxidative stress. To evaluate the physiological significance of our findings, in a tumor xenograft model, we observed that a combination treatment with pharmacological inhibitors of c-Met and it's anti-oxidant downstream effecter HO-1 markedly reduced the growth of renal tumor in vivo; it increased the oxidative stress, DNA damage and apoptotic markers in the tumor xenografts, along with reduced tumor vessel density. Our observations indicate that the c-Met-Nrf2-HO-1 pathway plays a vital role in relieving ROS-mediated oxidative stress of renal tumors. Targeting this pathway can significantly increase the oxidative stress to promote apoptotic death of cancer cells.
Genistein Prevents Development of Spontaneous Ovarian Cancer and inhibits Tumor Growth in Hen Model
Sahin K, Yenice E, Bilir B, Orhan C, Tuzcu M, Sahin N, Ozercan IH, Kabil N, Ozpolat B and Kucuk O
Genistein, the major isoflavone in soybean, has been reported to exert anticancer effects on various types of cancer including ovarian cancer; however, its chemopreventive effects and mechanisms of action in ovarian cancer have not been fully elucidated in spontaneously developing ovarian cancer models. In the present study, we demonstrated the preventive effects and mechanisms of genistein in the laying hen model that develops spontaneous ovarian cancer at high incidence rates. Laying hens were randomized to three groups: control (3.01 mg/hen, n = 100) or low (52.48 mg/hen n=100) and high genistein supplementation (106.26 mg/hen per day; per group). At the end of 78 weeks, hens were euthanized and ovarian tumors were collected and analyzed. We observed that genistein supplementation significantly reduced the ovarian tumor incidence (p = 0.002) as well as the number and size of the tumors (p= 0.0001). Molecular analysis of the ovarian tumors revealed that genistein downregulated serum malondialdehyde (MDA), a marker for oxidative stress and the expression of NF-κB, Bcl-2 and whereas it upregulated Nrf2, HO-1 and Bax expression at protein level in ovarian tissues. Moreover, genistein intake decreased the activity of mTOR pathway as evidenced by reduced phosphorylation of mTOR, p70S6K1, and 4E-BP1. Taken together, our findings strongly support the potential of genistein in the chemoprevention of ovarian cancer and highlight the effects of the genistein on the molecular pathways involved in ovarian tumorigenesis.
Cruciferous Vegetables as Antioxidative, Chemopreventive and Antineoplasic Functional Foods: Preclinical and Clinical evidences of Sulforaphane Against Prostate Cancers
Pinheiro Ferreira PM, Rosal Lopes LA, de Alencar Carnib LP, de Lima Sousa PV, Nolasco Lugo LM, Fonseca Nunes NM, Nascimento Silva JD, Silva Araújo LD and Gonçalves Frota KM
Sulforaphane (SF, 1-isothiocyanato-4-(methyl-sulfinyl)-butane) is found in broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower.
Redox Regulation by NRF2 in Aging and Disease
Schmidlin CJ, Dodson MB, Madhavan L and Zhang DD
NRF2, a transcription factor that has been deemed the master regulator of cellular redox homeostasis, declines with age. NRF2 transcriptionally upregulates genes that combat oxidative stress; therefore, loss of NRF2 allows oxidative stress to go unmitigated and drive the aging phenotype. Oxidative stress is a common theme among the key features associated with the aging process, collectively referred to as the "Hallmarks of Aging", as it disrupts proteostasis, alters genomic stability, and leads to cell death. In this review, we outline the role that oxidative stress and the reduction of NRF2 play in each of the Hallmarks of Aging, including how they contribute to the onset of neurodegenerative disorders, cancer, and other age-related pathologies.
Chitosan oligosaccharides induce apoptosis in human renal carcinoma via ROS-dependent ER stress
Zhai X, Yuan S, Yang X, Zou P, Li L, Li G, Shao Y, Abd El-Aty AM, Hacımüftüoğlu A and Wang J
In recent years, various studies have confirmed the role of natural products as effective cancer prevention and treatment drug. The present study demonstrated chitosan oligosaccharide (COS) from shells of shrimp and crab, caused an inhibitory effect on the proliferation of human renal carcinoma in vitro and in vivo. First, the in vivo biodistribution of COS was investigated by the synthesis of cyanine 7-labelled COS (COS-Cy7) following tail vein injection. The kidney was found to be major target organ. Then, the impacts on renal carcinoma cell proliferation, apoptosis and ROS production were observed in vitro, and an orthotopic xenograft tumour model was designed to evaluate the antitumour efficacy of COS in vivo. In renal carcinoma cells, COS induced G2/M phase arrest and apoptosis in a ROS-dependent fashion. COS significantly promoted mRNA expression of Nrf2 and Nrf2 target genes, such as HMOX1, GCLM, and SLC7A11. Additionally, COS significantly upregulated the protein expression of GRP78, PERK, eIF2α, ATF4, CHOP and Cyt c, which justified the activation of the ER stress signalling pathway. In vivo, COS repressed tumour growth and induced apoptosis and ROS accumulation, consistent with the in vitro results. Taken together, COS repressed human renal carcinoma growth and induced apoptosis both in vitro and in vivo, mainly via ROS-dependent ER stress pathways.
Mechanisms and Therapeutic Targets of Depression After Intracerebral Hemorrhage
Wu Y, Wang L, Hu K, Yu C, Zhu Y, Zhang S and Shao A
The relationship between depression and intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) is complicated. One of the most common neuropsychiatric comorbidities of hemorrhagic stroke is Post-ICH depression. Depression, as a neuropsychiatric symptom, also negatively impacts the outcome of ICH by enhancing morbidity, disability, and mortality. However, the ICH outcome can be improved by antidepressants such as the frequently-used selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. This review therefore presents the mechanisms of post-ICH depression, we grouped the mechanisms according to inflammation, oxidative stress (OS), apoptosis and autophagy, and explained them through their several associated signaling pathways. Inflammation is mainly related to Toll-like receptors (TLRs), the NF-kB mediated signal pathway, the PPAR-γ-dependent pathway, as well as other signaling pathways. OS is associated to nuclear factor erythroid-2 related factor 2 (Nrf2), the PI3K/Akt pathway and the MAPK/P38 pathway. Moreover, autophagy is associated with the mTOR signaling cascade and the NF-kB mediated signal pathway, while apoptosis is correlated with the death receptor-mediated apoptosis pathway, mitochondrial apoptosis pathway, caspase-independent pathways and others. Furthermore, we found that neuroinflammation, oxidative stress, autophagy, and apoptosis experience interactions with one another. Additionally, it may provide several potential therapeutic targets for patients that might suffer from depression after ICH.
PCK1 Downregulation Promotes TXNRD1 Expression and Hepatoma Cell Growth via the Nrf2/Keap1 Pathway
Tuo L, Xiang J, Pan X, Gao Q, Zhang G, Yang Y, Liang L, Xia J, Wang K and Tang N
Gluconeogenesis, generates glucose from small carbohydrate substrates, and drives the metabolic flux in parallel but opposite to glycolysis. The cytoplasmic isoform of phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PCK1 or PEPCK-C), a rate-limiting enzyme in gluconeogenesis, initiates the gluconeogenesis process and is reportedly dysregulated in multiple types of cancer. Gluconeogenesis mainly occurs in the liver during fasting, and previous studies have demonstrated that PCK1 acts as a tumor suppressor in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC); however, the role of PCK1 in cancer progression remains incompletely understood. In the current study, we found that PCK1 expression was decreased in HCC as compared to adjacent normal liver tissues, and low PCK1 expression correlated with poor patient prognosis. Furthermore, overexpression of PCK1 suppressed reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and nuclear translocation of Nrf2 in hepatoma cells. In addition, thioredoxin reductase 1 (TXNRD1), an antioxidant enzyme regulated by the Nrf2/Keap1 pathway, was downregulated upon overexpression of PCK1 in HCC cell lines. Furthermore, we verified this axis using nude mouse xenograft model. Finally, we found that auranofin, a TXNRD1 inhibitor, enhanced the sensitivity of PCK1-knockout hepatoma cells to sorafenib-induced apoptosis. Taken together, our findings suggest that PCK1 deficiency promotes hepatoma cell proliferation via the induction of oxidative stress and the activation of transcription factor Nrf2, and that targeting the TXNRD1 antioxidant pathway sensitizes PCK1-knockout hepatoma cells to sorafenib treatment .
Melatonin: The smart molecule that differentially modulates autophagy in tumor and normal placental cells
Sagrillo-Fagundes L, Bienvenue-Pariseault J and Vaillancourt C
Melatonin has protective roles in normal cells and cytotoxic actions in cancer cells, with effects involving autophagy and nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (Nrf2) transcription factor pathways. Hypoxia/reoxygenation (H/R) induces oxidative damage and apoptosis. These consequences activate autophagy, which degrades damaged cellular content, as well as activates Nrf2 the nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (Nrf2) transcription factor, and thereby the expression of protective genes. Melatonin has protective roles in normal cells and cytotoxic actions in cancer cells, with effects involving autophagy and Nrf2 pathways. The current study shows melatonin to differentially modulate autophagy and Nrf2 pathways in tumor and normal placental cells exposed to H/R. BeWo, a human placental choriocarcinoma cell line, and primary villous cytotrophoblasts isolated from normal term placenta, were maintained in normoxia (8% O2) for 24 h or exposed to hypoxia (0.5% of O2 for 4 h) followed by 20 h of normoxia, creating a situation of H/R, in the presence or absence of 1 mM melatonin. Melatonin induced a 7-fold increase in the activation of 5' adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK)α, an upstream modulator of autophagy, rising to a 16-fold increase in BeWo cells co-exposed to H/R and melatonin, compared to controls. H/R induced autophagosome formation via the increased expression of Beclin-1 (by 94%) and ATG7 (by 97%) in BeWo cells. Moreover, H/R also induced autophagic activity, indicated by the by the 630% increase in P62, and increased Nrf2 by 314% in BeWo cells. In H/R conditions, melatonin reduced autophagic activity by 74% and Nrf2 expression activation by 300%, leading to BeWo cell apoptosis. In contrast, In human primary villous cytotrophoblasts, H/R induced autophagy and Nrf2, which melatonin further potentiated, thereby affording protection against H/R. This study demonstrates that melatonin differentially modulates autophagy and the Nrf2 pathway in normal vs. tumor trophoblast cells, being cytoprotective in normal cells whilst increasing apoptosis in tumoral trophoblast cells.

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