We investigated the effects of simvastatin treatment on the expression of IL-1beta and MCP-1, the activity of NF-kB, and the signaling pathways related to NF-kB activation in a rat model of permanent middle cerebral artery occlusion (pMCAO). IL-1beta and MCP-1 expression, determined using RT-PCR, was enhanced by pMCAO; this effect was inhibited by the administration of simvastatin before ischemia. Pre-treatment with simvastatin abolished the ischemia-induced activation of NF-kB observed in vehicle-treated animals. The evaluation of signal transduction pathways, including extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK1/2), SAPK/JNK 46/54 and p38, indicated that only ERK1/2 phosphorylation was enhanced by ischemia, and this activation was prevented by simvastatin. ERK1/2-inhibitor, U0126, reduced brain ischemia but not cytokine induction. These results provide evidence that the HMG-CoA reductase inhibitor induces its effect in the protection of ischemic brain damage with a more complex mechanism which also involve anti-inflammatory properties rather than simple inhibition of ERK1/2 signaling pathway.
- Cerebral ischemia
- MAP kinase
- Permanent middle cerebral artery occlusion
- Transcription factor
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