Experimental research
Effects of ghrelin on protein expression of antioxidative enzymes and iNOS in the rat liver
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Submission date: 2012-12-11
Final revision date: 2013-01-27
Acceptance date: 2013-02-24
Online publication date: 2014-08-29
Publication date: 2014-08-31
Arch Med Sci 2014;10(4):806–816
Introduction: We investigated the effects of ghrelin on protein expression of the liver antioxidant enzymes superoxide dismutases (SODs), catalase (CAT), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), and glutathione reductase (GR), nuclear factor κB (NFκB) and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS). Furthermore, we aimed to investigate whether extracellular regulated protein kinase (ERK1/2) and protein kinase B (Akt) are involved in ghrelin-regulated liver antioxidant enzymes and iNOS protein expression.
Material and methods: Male Wistar rats were treated with ghrelin (0.3 nmol/5 µl) injected into the lateral cerebral ventricle every 24 h for 5 days, and 2 h after the last treatment the animals were sacrificed and the liver excised. The Western blot method was used to determine expression of antioxidant enzymes, iNOS, phosphorylation of Akt, ERK1/2 and nuclear factor kB (NFκB) subunits 50 and 65.
Results: There was significantly higher protein expression of CuZnSOD (p < 0.001), MnSOD (p < 0.001), CAT (p < 0.001), GPx, (p < 0.001), and GR (p < 0.01) in the liver isolated from ghrelin-treated animals compared with control animals. In contrast, ghrelin significantly (p < 0.01) reduced protein expression of iNOS. In addition, phosphorylation of NFκB subunits p65 and p50 was significantly (p < 0.001 for p65; p < 0.05 for p50) reduced by ghrelin when compared with controls. Phosphorylation of ERK1/2 and of Akt was significantly higher in ghrelin-treated than in control animals (p < 0.05 for ERK1/2; p < 0.01 for Akt).
Conclusions: The results show that activation of Akt and ERK1/2 is involved in ghrelin-mediated regulation of protein expression of antioxidant enzymes and iNOS in the rat liver.