Inhibitors of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase modulate signal transduction pathways and secondary damage in experimental spinal cord trauma

Tiziana Genovese, Emanuela Mazzon, Carmelo Muià, N. S A Patel, Michael D. Threadgill, Placido Bramanti, Angelina De Sarro, Christoph Thiemermann, Salvatore Cuzzocrea

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Poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP), a nuclear enzyme activated by strand breaks in DNA, plays an important role in the tissue injury associated with stroke and neurotrauma. The aim of our study was to evaluate the therapeutic efficacy of in vivo inhibition of PARP in an experimental model of spinal cord trauma, which was induced by the application of vascular clips (force of 24g) to the dura via a four-level T5-T8 laminectomy. Spinal cord injury in mice resulted in severe trauma characterized by edema, neutrophil infiltration (measured as an increase in myeloperoxidase activity), and apoptosis (measured by terminal deoxynucleotidyltransferase-mediated UTP end labeling coloration). Infiltration of spinal cord tissue with neutrophils was associated with a marked increase in immunoreactivity for poly(ADP-ribose) (PAR), index of PARP activation, in the spinal cord tissue. These inflammatory events were associated with the activation of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) at 4 h after spinal cord damage. Treatment of the mice with the PARP inhibitors 3-aminobenzamide (3-AB) or 5-aminoisoquinolinone (5-AIQ) significantly reduced the degree of 1) spinal cord inflammation and tissue injury (histological score), 2) PAR formation, 3) neutrophil infiltration, and 4) apoptosis. Treatment with these PARP inhibitors also reduced DNA binding of NF-κB and inhibitory κB degradation. In a separate set of experiments, we have also demonstrated that PARP inhibitors significantly ameliorated the recovery of limb function (evaluated by motor recovery score). Taken together, our results clearly demonstrate that treatment with PARP inhibitors reduces the development of inflammation and tissue injury events associated with spinal cord trauma.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)449-457
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology


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