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Neuroligin-3 protects retinal cells from H2O2-induced cell death via activation of Nrf2 signaling

Li, Xiu-miao, Huang, Dan, Yu, Qing, Yang, Jian, Yao, Jin
Biochemical and biophysical research communications 2018 v.502 no.1 pp. 166-172
DNA damage, apoptosis, enzymes, epithelium, ganglia, gene expression, humans, hydrogen peroxide, lipid peroxidation, messenger RNA, oxidative stress, retina
Intensified oxidative stress can cause severe damage to human retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells and retinal ganglion cells (RGCs). The potential effect of neuroligin-3 (NLGN3) against the process is studied here. Our results show that NLGN3 efficiently inhibited hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)-induced death and apoptosis in human RPE cells and RGCs. H2O2-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, lipid peroxidation and DNA damage in retinal cells were alleviated by NLGN3. NLGN3 activated nuclear-factor-E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) signaling, enabling Nrf2 protein stabilization, nuclear translocation and expression of key anti-oxidant enzymes (HO1, NOQ1 and GCLC) in RPE cells and RGCs. Further results demonstrate that NLGN3 activated Akt-mTORC1 signaling in retinal cells. Conversely, Akt-mTORC1 inhibitors (RAD001 and LY294002) reduced NLGN3-induced HO1, NOQ1 and GCLC mRNA expression. Significantly, Nrf2 silencing by targeted shRNAs reversed NLGN3-induced retinal cytoprotection against H2O2. We conclude that NLGN3 activates Nrf2 signaling to protect human retinal cells from H2O2. NLGN3 could be further tested as a valuable retinal protection agent.