Paeonol regulates NLRP3 inflammasomes and pyroptosis to alleviate spinal cord injury of rat

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Background: Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a life-threatening traumatic disorder. Paeonol has been confirmed to be involved in a variety of diseases. The purpose of this study is to investigate the role of paeonol on SCI progression. Methods: Sprague Dawley (SD) rat was used for the establishment of SCI model to explore the anti-inflammation, anti-oxidation, and neuroprotective effects of paeonol (60 mg/kg) on SCI in vivo. For in vitro study, mouse primary microglial cells (BV-2) were induced by lipopolysaccharide (LPS)/adenosine triphosphate (ATP) treatment. The effect of paeonol on the polarization of LPS/ATP-induced BV-2 cells was determined by detection the expression inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), tumour necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), arginase-1 (Arg-1), and interleukin (IL)-10 using qRT-PCR. ELISA was used to assess the levels of IL-1β, IL-18, TNF-α, malondialdehyde (MDA), and glutathione (GSH). Western blotting was conducted to determine the levels of NLRP3 inflammasomes and TLR4/MyD88/NF-κB (p65) pathway proteins. Results: Paeonol promoted the recovery of locomotion function and spinal cord structure, and decreased spinal cord water content in rats following SCI. Meanwhile, paeonol reduced the levels of apoptosis-associated speck-like protein (ASC), NLRP3, active caspase 1 and N-gasdermin D (N-GSDMD), repressed the contents of IL-1β, IL-18, TNF-α and MDA, and elevated GSH level. In vitro, paeonol exerted similarly inhibiting effects on pyroptosis and inflammation. Meanwhile, paeonol promoted BV-2 cells M2 polarization. In addition, paeonol also inactivated the expression of TLR4/MyD88/NF-κB (p65) pathway. Conclusion: Paeonol may regulate NLRP3 inflammasomes and pyroptosis to alleviate SCI, pointing out the potential for treating SCI in clinic.




Zhao, H., Wang, X., Liu, S., & Zhang, Q. (2022). Paeonol regulates NLRP3 inflammasomes and pyroptosis to alleviate spinal cord injury of rat. BMC Neuroscience, 23(1).

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