Modification of Wnt signaling pathway on paraquat-induced inhibition of neural progenitor cell proliferation

Lina Zhao, Mengling Yan, Xinjin Wang, Guiya Xiong, Chunhua Wu, Zhibin Wang, Zhijun Zhou, Xiuli Chang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Paraquat (PQ) is an agricultural chemical used worldwide. As a potential neurotoxicant, PQ adversely affects neurogenesis and inhibits proliferation of neural progenitor cells (NPCs). However, the molecular mechanistic insights of PQ exposure on NPCs remains to be determined. Herein, we determine the extent to which Wnt/β-catenin signaling involved in the inhibition effect of PQ on mouse NPCs from subventricular zone (SVZ). NPCs were treated with different concentrations of PQ (40, 80, and 120 μM). PQ exposure provoked oxidative stress and apoptosis and PQ inhibited cell viability and proliferation in a concentration-dependent manner. Significantly, PQ exposure altered the expression/protein levels of the Wnt pathway genes in NPCs. In addition, PQ reduced cellular β-catenin, p-GSK-3β and cyclin-D1 and increased the radio of Bax/Bcl2. Further, Wnt pathway activation by treatment with LiCl and Wnt1 attenuated PQ-induced inhibition of mNPCs proliferation. Antioxidant (NAC) treatment alleviated the inhibition of PQ-induced Wnt signaling pathway. Overall, our results suggest significant inhibitory effects of PQ on NPCs proliferation via the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway. Interestingly, our results implied that activation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway attenuated PQ-induced autophagic cell death. Our results therefore bring our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of PQ-induced neurotoxicity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)311-325
Number of pages15
JournalFood and Chemical Toxicology
StatePublished - Nov 2018


  • Apoptosis
  • Autophagic cell death
  • Neural progenitor cells
  • Paraquat
  • Proliferation inhibition
  • Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Toxicology


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