Oral administration of sitagliptin activates CREB and is neuroprotective in murine model of brain trauma

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  • Brian William Della Valle
  • Gitte S. Brix
  • Brock, Birgitte
  • Michael Geji
  • Jørgen Rungby
  • Agnete Larsen
Introduction: Traumatic brain injury is a major cause of mortality and morbidity. We have previously shown that the injectable glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) analog, liraglutide, significantly improved the outcome in mice after severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). In this study we are interested in the effects of oral treatment of a different class of GLP-1 based therapy, dipeptidyl peptidase IV (DPP-IV) inhibition on mice after TBI. DPP-IV inhibitors reduce the degradation of endogenous GLP-1 and extend circulation of this protective peptide in the bloodstream. This class has yet to be investigated as a potential therapy for TBI. Methods: Mice were administrated once-daily 50 mg/kg of sitagliptin in a Nutella® ball or Nutella® alone throughout the study, beginning 2 days before severe trauma was induced with a stereotactic cryo-lesion. At 2 days post trauma, lesion size was determined. Brains were isolated for immunoblotting for assessment of selected biomarkers for pathology and protection. Results: Sitagliptin treatment reduced lesion size at day 2 post-injury by ~28% (p < 0.05). Calpain-driven necrotic tone was reduced ~2-fold in sitagliptin-treated brains (p < 0.001) and activation of the protective cAMP-response element binding protein (CREB) system was significantly more pronounced (~1.5-fold, p < 0.05). The CREB-regulated, mitochondrial antioxidant protein manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) was increased in sitagliptin-treated mice (p < 0.05). Conversely, apoptotic tone (alpha-spectrin fragmentation, Bcl-2 levels) and the neuroinflammatory markers IL-6, and Iba-1 were not affected by treatment. Conclusions: This study shows, for the first time, that DPP-IV inhibition ameliorates both anatomical and biochemical consequences of TBI and activates CREB in the brain. Moreover, this work supports previous studies suggesting that the effect of GLP-1 analogs in models of brain damage relates to GLP-1 receptor stimulation in a dose-dependent manner.
Original languageEnglish
Article number450
JournalFrontiers in Pharmacology
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2016

    Research areas

  • GLP-1, traumatic brain injury, TBI, sitagliptin, liraglutide, CREB, GIP, DPP-IV

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