Background: We demonstrated that oxidative stress plays a crucial role in cognitive impairment in klotho mutant mice, a genetic model of aging. Since down-regulation of melatonin due to aging is well documented, we used this genetic model to determine whether the antioxidant property of melatonin affects memory impairment. Methods: First, we examined the effects of melatonin on hippocampal oxidative parameters and the glutathione/oxidized glutathione (GSH/GSSG) ratio and memory dysfunction of klotho mutant mice. Second, we investigated whether a specific melatonin receptor is involved in the melatonin-mediated pharmacological response by application with melatonin receptor antagonists. Third, we examined phospho-extracellular-signal-regulated kinase (ERK) expression, nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) nuclear translocation, Nrf2 DNA binding activity, and glutamate-cysteine ligase (GCL) mRNA expression. Finally, we examined effects of the ERK inhibitor SL327 in response to antioxidant efficacy and memory enhancement mediated by melatonin. Results: Treatment with melatonin resulted in significant attenuations of oxidative damage, a decrease in the GSH/GSSG ratio, and a significant amelioration of memory impairment in this aging model. These effects of melatonin were significantly counteracted by the selective MT2 receptor antagonist 4-P-PDOT. Importantly, 4-P-PDOT or SL327 also counteracted melatoninmediated attenuation in response to the decreases in phospho-ERK expression, Nrf2 nuclear translocation, Nrf2 DNA-binding activity, and GCL mRNA expression in the hippocampi of klotho mutant mice. SL327 also counteracted the up-regulation of the GSH/GSSG ratio and the memory enhancement mediated by melatonin in klotho mutant mice. Conclusions: Melatonin attenuates oxidative stress and the associated memory impairment induced by klotho deficiency via signaling interaction between the MT2 receptor and ERK- and Nrf2-related antioxidant potential.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Psychiatry and Mental health
- Pharmacology (medical)