Glycyrrhetinic acid inhibits ICAM-1 expression via blocking JNK and NF-kappaB pathways in TNF-alpha-activated endothelial cells

Ying-ling Chang, Chien-lin Chen, Chao-Lin Kuo, Bor-chyuan Chen, Jyh-sheng You
Acta Pharmacologica Sinica 2010, 31 (5): 546-53

AIM: To investigate the effects of glycyrrhetinic acid (GA), an active component extracted from the root of Glycyrrhizae glabra, on the expression of intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) in tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha)-activated human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC).

METHODS: ICAM-1 mRNA and protein levels were detected using RT-PCR and cell enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. The adherence of human monocytic THP-1 cells labeled with [(3)H]thymidine to HUVEC was determined by counting radioactivity with a scintillation counter. The activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases as well as the degradation of I kappaB and nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-kappaB) or phospho-c-Jun in the nucleus were detected by western blots. NF-kappaB binding activity was detected using electrophoretic mobility shift assay.

RESULTS: GA (50 and 100 micromol/L) significantly inhibits TNF-alpha-induced ICAM-1 mRNA and protein expressions, as well as THP-1 cell adhesiveness in HUVEC. GA selectively inhibited TNF-alpha-activated signal pathway of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), without affecting extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 and p38. Furthermore, GA apparently inhibited I kappaB/NF-kappaB signaling system by preventing I kappaB degradation, NF-kappaB translocation, and NF-kappaB/DNA binding activity. Finally, pretreatment with GA or the inhibitors of NF-kappaB, JNK, and p38 reduced the ICAM-1 protein expression induced by TNF-alpha.

CONCLUSION: GA inhibits TNF-alpha-stimulated ICAM-1 expression, leading to a decrease in adherent monocytes to HUVEC. This inhibition is attributed to GA interruption of both JNK/c-Jun and I kappaB/NF-kappaB signaling pathways, which decrease activator protein-1 (AP-1) and NF-kappaB mediated ICAM-1 expressions. The results suggest that GA may provide a beneficial effect in treating vascular diseases associated with inflammation, such as atherosclerosis.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"