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Reduction of Plasmalogens Leading to Microglial Activation

Discussion in 'Other Health News and Research' started by pattismith, Dec 31, 2017.

  1. pattismith

    pattismith Senior Member

    Reduction of Ether-Type Glycerophospholipids, Plasmalogens, by NF-κB Signal Leading to Microglial Activation

    Journal of Neuroscience 12 April 2017


    Neuroinflammation characterized by activation of glial cells is observed in various neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease (AD).
    Although the reduction of ether-type glycerophospholipids, plasmalogens (Pls), in the brain is reported in AD patients, the mechanism of the reduction and its impact on neuroinflammation remained elusive.

    In the present study, we found for the first time that various inflammatory stimuli reduced Pls levels in murine glial cells via NF-κB activation, which then downregulated a Pls-synthesizing enzyme, glycerone phosphate O-acyltransferase (Gnpat) through increased c-Myc recruitment onto the Gnpat promoter.

    We also found that systemic injection of lipopolysaccharide, aging, and chronic restraint stress reduced brain Pls contents that were associated with glial NF-κB activation, an increase in c-Myc expression, and downregulation of Gnpat in the mouse cortex and hippocampus.

    More interestingly, the reduction of Pls contents in the murine cortex itself could increase the activated phenotype of microglial cells and the expression of proinflammatory cytokines, suggesting further acceleration of neuroinflammation by reduction of brain Pls.
    A similar mechanism of Gnpat reduction was also found in human cell lines, triple-transgenic AD mouse brain, and postmortem human AD brain tissues. These findings suggest a novel mechanism of neuroinflammation that may explain prolonged progression of AD and help us to explore preventive and therapeutic strategies to treat neurodegenerative diseases.


    Ether-type glycerophospholipids, plasmalogens (Pls), are reduced in the brain of Alzheimer disease (AD) patients.
    We found that inflammatory stimuli reduced Pls contents by downregulation of the Pls-synthesizing enzyme glycerone phosphate O-acyltransferase (Gnpat) through NF-κB-mediated recruitment of c-Myc onto the Gnpat promoter in both murine and human cell lines.

    Murine brains after systemic lipopolysaccharide, chronic stress, and aging, as well as triple-transgenic AD mice and postmortem human AD brain tissues all showed increased c-Myc and reduced Gnpat expression.

    Interestingly, knockdown of Gnpat itself activated NF-κB in glial cell lines and microglia in mouse cortex. Our findings provide a new insight into the mechanism of neuroinflammation and may help to develop a novel therapeutic approach for neurodegenerative diseases such as AD.

    (full article available)

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