Neuroglobin (Ngb) is an endogenous neuroprotective molecule against hypoxic/ischemic brain injury, but the underlying mechanisms remain largely undefined. Our recent study revealed that Ngb can bind to voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC), a regulator of mitochondria permeability transition (MPT). In this study we examined the role of Ngb in MPT pore (mPTP) opening following oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) in primary cultured mouse cortical neurons. Co-immunoprecipitation (Co-IP) and immunocytochemistry showed that the binding between Ngb and VDAC was increased after OGD compared to normoxia, indicating the OGD-enhanced Ngb-VDAC interaction. Ngb overexpression protected primary mouse cortical neurons from OGD-induced neuronal death, to an extent comparable to mPTP opening inhibitor, cyclosporine A (CsA) pretreatment. We further measured the role of Ngb in OGD-induced mPTP opening using Ngb overexpression and knockdown approaches in primary cultured neurons, and recombinant Ngb exposure to isolated mitochondria. Same as CsA pretreatment, Ngb overexpression significantly reduced OGD-induced mPTP opening markers including mitochondria swelling, mitochondrial NAD+ release, and cytochrome c (Cyt c) release in primary cultured neurons. Recombinant Ngb incubation significantly reduced OGD-induced NAD+ release and Cyt c release from isolated mitochondria. In contrast, Ngb knockdown significantly increased OGD-induced neuron death, and increased OGD-induced mitochondrial NAD+ release and Cyt c release as well, and these outcomes could be rescued by CsA pretreatment. In summary, our results demonstrated that Ngb overexpression can inhibit OGD-induced mPTP opening in primary cultured mouse cortical neurons, which may be one of the molecular mechanisms of Ngb's neuroprotection. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.
Yu, Z., Liu, N., Li, Y., Xu, J., & Wang, X. (2013). Neuroglobin overexpression inhibits oxygen-glucose deprivation-induced mitochondrial permeability transition pore opening in primary cultured mouse cortical neurons. Neurobiology of Disease, 56, 95–103. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nbd.2013.04.015