Protein kinase C expression and activity after global incomplete cerebral ischemia in dogs

Frederick E. Sieber, Richard J. Traystman, Phillip R. Brown, Lee J. Martin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


Background and Purpose - Studies suggest that protein kinase C (PKC) activation during ischemia plays an important role in glutamate neurotoxicity and that PKC inhibition may be neuroprotective. We tested the hypothesis that elevations in the biochemical activity and protein expression of Ca2+- dependent PKC isoforms occur in hippocampus and cerebellum during the period of delayed neurodegeneration after mild brain ischemia. Methods - We used a dog model of 20 minutes of global incomplete ischemia followed by either 6 hours, 1 day, or 7 days of recovery. Changes in PKC expression (Western blotting and immunocytochemistry) and biochemical activity were compared with neuropathology (percent ischemically damaged neurons) by means of hematoxylin and eosin staining. Results - The percentage of ischemically damaged neurons increased from 13±4% to 52±10% in CA1 and 24±11% to 69±6% in cerebellar Purkinje cells from 1 to 7 days, respectively. The occurrence of neuronal injury was accompanied by sustained increases in PKC activity (240% and 211% of control in hippocampus and cerebellum, respectively) and increased protein phosphorylation as detected by proteins containing phosphoserine residues. By Western blotting, the membrane-enriched fraction showed postischemic changes in protein expression with increases of 146±64% of control in hippocampal PKCα and increases of 138±38% of control in cerebellar PKCα, but no changes in PKCβ and PKCγ were observed. By immunocytochemistry, the neuropil of CA1 and CA4 in hippocampus and the radial glia in the molecular layer of cerebellum showed increased PKCα expression after ischemia. Conclusions - This study shows that during the period of progressive ischemic neurodegeneration there are regionally specific increases in PKC activity, isoform-specific increases in membrane-associated PKC, and elevated protein phosphorylation at serine sites.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1445-1453
Number of pages9
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1998


  • Cerebral ischemia, global
  • Cerebral ischemia, transient
  • Dogs
  • Neuronal damage
  • Neuronal death
  • Protein kinase C

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing


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