Differential Effects of E2 on MAPK Activity in the Brain and Heart of Aged Female Rats Journal Article

Authors: Pinceti, E.; Shults, C. L.; Rao, Y. S.; Pak, T. R.
Article Title: Differential Effects of E2 on MAPK Activity in the Brain and Heart of Aged Female Rats
Abstract: Aging and the coincident loss of circulating estrogens at menopause lead to increased risks for neurological and cardiovascular pathologies. Clinical studies show that estrogen therapy (ET) can be beneficial in mitigating these negative effects, in both the brain and heart, when it is initiated shortly after the perimenopausal transition. However, this same therapy is detrimental when initiated >10 years postmenopause. Importantly, the molecular mechanisms underlying this age-related switch in ET efficacy are unknown. Estrogen receptors (ERs) mediate the neuroprotective and cardioprotective functions of estrogens by modulating gene transcription or, non-genomically, by activating second messenger signaling pathways, such as mitogen activated protein kinases (MAPK). These kinases are critical regulators of cell signaling pathways and have widespread downstream effects. Our hypothesis is that age and estrogen deprivation following menopause alters the expression and activation of the MAPK family members p38 and ERK in the brain and heart. To test this hypothesis, we used a surgically induced model of menopause in 18 month old rats through bilateral ovariectomy (OVX) followed by an acute dose of 17beta-estradiol (E2) administered at varying time points post-OVX (1 week, 4 weeks, 8 weeks, or 12 weeks). Age and E2 treatment differentially regulated kinase activity in both the brain and heart, and the effects were also brain region specific. MAPK signaling plays an integral role in aging, and the aberrant regulation of those signaling pathways might be involved in age-related disorders. Clinical studies show benefits of ET during early menopause but detrimental effects later, which might be reflective of changes in kinase expression and activation status.
Journal Title: PloS one
Volume: 11
Issue: 8
ISSN: 1932-6203; 1932-6203
Publisher: Unknown  
Journal Place: United States
Date Published: 2016
Start Page: e0160276
Language: ENG
Notes: LR: 20160819; JID: 101285081; OID: NLM: PMC4972350; 2016/02/26 [received]; 2016/07/15 [accepted]; epublish