Involvement of multiple survival signal transduction pathways in the neuroprotective, neurorescue and APP processing activity of rasagiline and its propargyl moiety
Our recent studies aimed to elucidate the molecular and biochemical mechanism of actions of the novel anti-Parkinson’s drug, rasagiline, an irreversible and selective monoamine oxidase (MAO)-B inhibitor and its propargyl moiety, propargylamine. In cell death models induced by serum withdrawal in rat PC12 cells and human SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells, both rasagiline and propargylamine exerted neuroprotective and neurorescue activities via multiple survival pathways, including: stimulation of protein kinase C (PKC) phosphorylation; up-regulation of protein and gene levels of PKCα, PKCɛ and the anti-apoptotic Bcl-2, Bcl-xL, and Bcl-w; and up-regulation of the neurotrophic factors, BDNF and GDNF mRNAs. Rasagiline and propargylamine inhibited the cleavage and subsequent activation of procaspase- 3 and poly ADP-ribose polymerase. Additionally, these compounds significantly down-regulated PKCγ mRNA and decreased the level of the pro-apoptotic proteins, Bax, Bad, Bim and H2A.X. Rasagiline and propargylamine both regulated amyloid precursor protein (APP) processing towards the nonamyloidogenic pathway. These structure-activity studies have provided evidence that propargylamine promoted neuronal survival via neuroprotective/neurorescue pathways similar to that of rasagiline. In addition, recent study demonstrated that chronic low doses of rasagiline administered to mice subsequently to 1 methyl–4 phenyl 1,2,3,6 tetrahydropyridine (MPTP), rescued dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta via activation of the Ras-PI3K-Akt survival pathway, suggesting that rasagiline may possess a disease modifying activity.
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