Astaxanthin inhibits microglia M1 activation against inflammatory injury triggered by lipopolysaccharide through down-regulating miR-31-5p.
Life Sci. 2020 Dec 22:118943. Epub 2020 Dec 22. PMID: 33359248
AIMS: Astaxanthin is a natural carotenoid, can readily cross the blood-brain barrier and exerts a powerful neuroprotective effect. In this study, experiments were performed to explore the underlying molecular mechanisms of which Astaxanthin inhibiting the microglia M1 activation.
MAIN METHODS: BV2 cells and mice were pre-treated with Astaxanthin and treated by Lipopolysaccharide (LPS). The expressions of M1-related factors (pro-inflammatory cytokines and M1 markers) were measured by RT-qPCR and western blot. The target association between miR-31-5p and Numb was explored via luciferase activity assay. MiR-31-5p mimic was transfected into BV2 cells, then the cells were treated with Astaxanthin in combination with LPS. The expression of M1-related factors and Notch pathway-related molecules were measured via RT-qPCR, western blot and immunofluorescence assay.
KEY FINDINGS: Precondition of BV2 cells with Astaxanthin inhibited the expression of M1-related factors triggered by LPS. In addition, Astaxanthin decreased the number of Iba1-positive microglia and downregulated the levels of M1-related factors in hippocampus in LPS-treated mice. Further investigation revealed that Astaxanthin-mediated suppression of M1-related factors levels was reversed by miR-31-5p mimic in BV2 cells stimulated by LPS. Subsequently, we verified that miR-31-5p repressed Numb expression by binding to the 3'-UTR of Numb mRNA. Also, Astaxanthin suppressed the expression of Notch1, Hes1 and Hes5 and improved the expression of Numb in BV2 cells challenged by LPS, but this alteration can be reversed by miR-31-5p mimic.
SIGNIFICANCE: Our study demonstrated that down-regulating miR-31-5p by Astaxanthin could be a potential therapeutic approach to suppress neuroinflammation via regulating microglia M1 activation.