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Int J Mol Med. 2012 Apr;29(4):630-6. doi: 10.3892/ijmm.2011.870. Epub 2011 Dec 28.

The selective mGluR5 agonist CHPG protects against traumatic brain injury in vitro and in vivo via ERK and Akt pathway.

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Department of Neurosurgery, Xijing Institute of Clinical Neuroscience, Xijing Hospital, Fourth Military Medical University, Xi'an, Shannxi 710032, PR China.


Group I metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) have been implicated in the pathophysiology of central nervous system injury, but the role of mGluR5 in traumatic brain injury (TBI) remains unclear. In the present study, we investigated the neuroprotective potency of (R,S)-2-chloro-5-hydroxyphenylglycine (CHPG), a selective mGluR5 agonist, for protecting against TBI in both in vitro and in vivo models. Primary cortical neurons were treated with 1 mM CHPG in an in vitro preparation 30 min before TBI, and 250 nM CHPG was injected into the right lateral ventricle of rats 30 min before TBI was induced in in vivo studies. The results showed that CHPG significantly attenuated lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release and neuronal apoptosis and reduced lesion volume. Compared to the control or vehicle group, the phosphorylation levels of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) and Akt were increased in the presence of CHPG, even following the induction of TBI. Furthermore, treatment with either the ERK inhibitor PD98059 or Akt inhibitor LY294002 partially reversed the CHPG's neuroprotective effects. These data suggest that CHPG minimizes brain damage after induction of TBI both in vitro and in vivo, and that these protective effects were possibly mediated by activation of the ERK and Akt signaling pathways. Thus, potentiating mGluR5 activity with selective agonists such as CHPG may be useful for the treatment of traumatic brain injury.

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