Augmentation of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase-dependent neuronal cell death by acidosis

Jian Zhang, Xiaoling Li, Herman Kwansa, Yun Tai Kim, Liye Yi, Gina Hong, Shaida A. Andrabi, Valina L. Dawson, Ted M. Dawson, Raymond C. Koehler, Zeng Jin Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Tissue acidosis is a key component of cerebral ischemic injury, but its influence on cell death signaling pathways is not well defined. One such pathway is parthanatos, in which oxidative damage to DNA results in activation of poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase and generation of poly(ADP-ribose) polymers that trigger release of mitochondrial apoptosis-inducing factor. In primary neuronal cultures, we first investigated whether acidosis per sé is capable of augmenting parthanatos signaling initiated pharmacologically with the DNA alkylating agent, N-methyl-N′-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine. Exposure of neurons to medium at pH 6.2 for 4 h after N-methyl-N′-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine washout increased intracellular calcium and augmented the N-methyl-N′-nitro-N-nitrosoguanidine-evoked increase in poly(ADP-ribose) polymers, nuclear apoptosis-inducing factor, and cell death. The augmented nuclear apoptosis-inducing factor and cell death were blocked by the acid-sensitive ion channel-1a inhibitor, psalmotoxin. In vivo, acute hyperglycemia during transient focal cerebral ischemia augmented tissue acidosis, poly(ADP-ribose) polymers formation, and nuclear apoptosis-inducing factor, which was attenuated by a poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase inhibitor. Infarct volume from hyperglycemic ischemia was decreased in poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase 1-null mice. Collectively, these results demonstrate that acidosis can directly amplify neuronal parthanatos in the absence of ischemia through acid-sensitive ion channel-1a. The results further support parthanatos as one of the mechanisms by which ischemia-associated tissue acidosis augments cell death.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1982-1993
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2017


  • Brain ischemia
  • Cell culture
  • Cell death mechanisms
  • Hyperglycemia
  • Stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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