NF-κB is a transcriptional factor that is involved in inflammation and cell survival regulation of hundreds of genes. Scientists have reviewed the role of transcription factor NF-κB and cerebral ischemia reperfusion (reoxygenation injury) 1.
Ischemic stroke (Blocked brain arteries) is one of the foremost causes of death and disability around the world. It is often followed by reperfusion (tissue damage caused when blood supply returns to tissue) and can induce additional problems such as; inflammatory response, apoptosis and neuronal damage2.
Cerebral ischemia reperfusion injury (CIRI) refers to the recovery of blood after a certain period of cerebral ischemia fails to recover its function and aggravates brain dysfunction3. The mechanism of CIRI has undergone a continuous deepening process from organ level to cell level and molecular level4.
NF-κB is a vital nuclear transcription factor that can transfer information from cytoplasm to nucleus. It prompts the corresponding genes expression, encoding acute-phase proteins, cell adhesion molecules, cell surface receptors and cytokines5.
NF-κB has become the focal point on the study related to cerebral ischemia. Many of animal experiments have revealed that the expression of NF-κB changes on the occurrence of cerebral ischemia. In a study scientists have reviewed the mechanism of NF-κB on neurons after cerebral ischemia reperfusion by having a thorough review of existing literature.
This transcription factor is activated by several endogenous and exogenous factors. Previously it has been revealed that NF-κB can regulate the expression of cytokines, inflammatory mediators and cell adhesion molecules through binding with kappa-B site present in the target gene enhancer6.
In cerebral ischemia-reperfusion, the momentary activation of NF-κB can induce the expression of neuron protective factor in hippocampus and protect the brain tissue. However, the constant or the over-expression of NF-κB can direct to death of neurons in hippocampus. Consequently, it can be concluded that NF-κB serves a dual function as a regulator of neurons survival in pathological conditions. It is believed that the outcome of NF-κB on brain primarily depends on the stimulus region and specific duration and dose7.
Many studies have exposed the significant function of the transcription factor NF-κB in cerebral ischemia that can be valuable for the medical treatment. In numerous circumstances, NF-κB acts as an anti-apoptotic protein, while in others it mostly functions as pro-apoptotic transcription factor that leads to acute neuro-degeneration.
Moreover, various fine points of how NF-κB acts in cerebral ischemia reperfusion leading towards neurologic damage demands for advanced explorations. Though, on the basis of current awareness, it is by now understandable that NF-κB offers many targets for therapeutic intervention in neuro-degeneration after cerebral ischemia reperfusion.
Written by: Rabeeia
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17 November, 2019