To further understand the anti-inflammatory effect of adenosine cyclic 3′,5′-monophosphate (cAMP), we examined the effect of protein kinase A (PKA) and cAMP-responsive guanine nucleotide exchange factor (Epac) on the transcription and production of cytokines and on the activity of mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPK) p38 and glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) in endotoxin-treated rat primary cultured microglia. The PKA specific agonist N6-benzoyladenosine-3,5-cAMP (6-Bnz-cAMP) not only inhibited the transcription and production of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and interleukin-1β (IL-1β) but also enhanced the transcription and expression of IL-10, while the Epac selective analog 8-(4-chlorophenylthio)-2-O-methyladenosine-3,5-cAMP (8-pCPT-2′-O-Me-cAMP) merely repressed the TNF-α expression. Western blots assays indicated that 6-Bnz-cAMP significantly inhibited lipopolysaccharide-induced activation of both p38 and GSK-3β in a dose-dependent manner; in contrast, 8-pCPT-2′-O-Me-cAMP only slightly repressed GSK-3β activity at large doses. Pretreatment with H-89, a specific PKA antagonist, could completely reverse the effect of 6-Bnz-cAMP on cytokines expressions and kinases activities but had no effect on the performance of 8-pCPT-2′-O-Me-cAMP. Our findings indicate that PKA and Epac exert differential effect on the expression of inflammatory cytokines such as TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-10, possibly owing to the different effects on the downstream effectors, MAPK p38, and GSK-3β.
Microglia Protein kinase A cAMP-responsive guanine nucleotide exchange factor Mitogen-activated protein kinases p38 Glycogen synthase kinase-3β
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This work was supported by grants from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (30600583 and 30901399) and National Postdoctoral Science Foundation of China (20080440625). We thank Dr. Yanxia Wang and Yong Li for assistance in microglia culture.
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