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Compound C independent of AMPK inhibits ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 expression in inflammatory stimulants-activated endothelial cells in vitro and in vivo

Young Min Kim, Min Young Kim, Hye Jung Kim, Gu Seob Roh, Gyung Hyuck Ko, Han Geuk Seo, Jae Heun Lee, Ki Churl Chang
Atherosclerosis 2011, 219 (1): 57-64
Activation of the NF-κB and mitogen activated protein (MAP) kinases plays an important role in the expression of inflammatory genes such as adhesion molecules. Although compound C is known as an AMPK inhibitor, AMPK-independent action of it has been recognized. Effects on the expression of ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 by compound C were investigated in TNF-α-activated human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) in vitro and in thoracic aorta of rats treated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in vivo. Compound C inhibited ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 expression at the transcriptional as well as translational level in TNF-α-activated HUVECs. In both DN-AMPK- and AMPKα(1)-siRNA-transfected HUVECs, compound C still inhibited TNF-α-induced VCAM-1 and ICAM-1 expression, indicating that this is AMPK-independent action. Interestingly, compound C significantly inhibited NF-κB activity and translocation of p65 to nucleus in HUVECs when activated with TNF-α. Importantly, administration of compound C (0.2 mg/kg) significantly reduced expression of both ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 in LPS-treated rat thoracic aortas. In addition, compound C significantly inhibited iNOS and production of NO in both TNF-α- and LPS-activated RAW 264.7 cells. Finally, compound C significantly inhibited phosphorylation of Akt and p-38MAPK but not protein kinase c or ERK1/2 in HUVECs. Taken together, we conclude that adhesion molecules (ICAM-1, VCAM-1) are to be the novel targets of compound C in preventing inflammatory insult to endothelial cells independent of AMPK inhibition via inhibition of NF-κB activity along with inhibition of phosphorylation of PI3K and P38 MAPK.


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