Novel curcumin analog C66 prevents diabetic nephropathy via JNK pathway with the involvement of p300/CBP-mediated histone acetylation

Yangwei Wang, Yonggang Wang, Manyu Luo, Hao Wu, Lili Kong, Ying Xin, Wenpeng Cui, Yunjie Zhao, Jingying Wang, Guang Liang, Lining Miao, Lu Cai
Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 2015, 1852 (1): 34-46
Glomerulosclerosis and interstitial fibrosis represent the key events in development of diabetic nephropathy (DN), with connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) and fibronectin 1 (FN-1) playing important roles in these pathogenic processes. To investigate whether the plant metabolite curcumin, which exerts epigenetic modulatory properties when applied as a pharmacological agent, may prevent DN via inhibition of the JNK pathway and epigenetic histone acetylation, diabetic and age-matched non-diabetic control mice were administered a 3-month course of curcumin analogue (C66), c-Jun N-terminal kinase inhibitor (JNKi, sp600125), or vehicle alone. At treatment end, half of the mice were sacrificed for analysis and the other half were maintained without treatment for an additional 3 months. Renal JNK phosphorylation was found to be significantly increased in the vehicle-treated diabetic mice, but not the C66- and JNKi-treated diabetic mice, at both the 3-month and 6-month time points. C66 and JNKi treatment also significantly prevented diabetes-induced renal fibrosis and dysfunction. Diabetes-related increases in histone acetylation, histone acetyl transferases' (HATs) activity, and the p300/CBP HAT expression were also significantly attenuated by C66 or JNKi treatment. Chromatin immunoprecipitation assays showed that C66 and JNKi treatments decreased H3-lysine9/14-acetylation (H3K9/14Ac) level and p300/CBP occupancy at the CTGF, PAI-1 and FN-1 gene promoters. Thus, C66 may significantly and persistently prevent renal injury and dysfunction in diabetic mice via down-regulation of diabetes-related JNK activation and consequent suppression of the diabetes-related increases in HAT activity, p300/CBP expression, and histone acetylation.

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