Dysregulation of the astrocytic glutamate transporter excitatory amino acid transporter 2 (EAAT2) is associated with several neurological disorders, including Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, and manganism, the latter induced by chronic exposure to high levels of manganese (Mn). Mechanisms of Mn-induced neurotoxicity include impairment of EAAT2 function secondary to the activation of the transcription factor Yin Yang 1 (YY1) by nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells (NF-κB). However, the upstream mechanisms by which Mn-induced NF-κB activates YY1 remain to be elucidated. In the present study, we used the H4 human astrocyte cell line to test if Mn activates YY1 through the canonical NF-κB signaling pathway, leading to EAAT2 repression. The results demonstrate that Mn exposure induced phosphorylation of the upstream kinase IκB kinase (IKK-β), leading to NF-κB p65 translocation, increased YY1 promoter activity, mRNA/protein levels, and consequently repressed EAAT2. Results also demonstrated that Mn-induced oxidative stress and subsequent TNF-α production were upstream of IKK-β activation, as antioxidants attenuated Mn-induced TNF-α production and IKK-β activation. Moreover, TNF-α inhibition attenuated the Mn-induced activation of IKK-β and YY1. Taken together, Mn-induced oxidative stress and TNF-α mediates activation of NF-κB signaling and YY1 upregulation, leading to repression of EAAT2. Thus, targeting reactive oxygen species (ROS), TNF-α and IKK-β may attenuate Mn-induced YY1 activation and consequent EAAT2 repression.
- Oxidative stress
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