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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14(9), 17845-17860; doi:10.3390/ijms140917845

Icariin Protects Rat Cardiac H9c2 Cells from Apoptosis by Inhibiting Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress

1
Laboratory of Chinese Herbal Pharmacology, Renmin Hospital, Hubei University of Medicine, Shiyan 442000, China
2
Department of Pharmacology, Hubei University of Medicine, Shiyan 442000, China
3
School of Chinese Medicine, Li Ka Shing Faculty, the University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China
4
School of Pharmacy, Hubei University of Medicine, Shiyan 442000, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 25 April 2013 / Revised: 10 August 2013 / Accepted: 14 August 2013 / Published: 30 August 2013
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics)
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Abstract

Endoplasmic reticulum stress (ERS) is one of the mechanisms of apoptotic cell death. Inhibiting the apoptosis induced by ERS may be a novel therapeutic target in cardiovascular diseases. Icariin, a flavonoid isolated from Epimedium brevicornum Maxim, has been demonstrated to have cardiovascular protective effects, but its effects on ERS are unknown. In the present study, we focused on icariin and investigated whether it might protect the cardiac cell from apoptosis via inhibition of ERS. In H9c2 rat cardiomyoblast cells, pretreatment of icariin significantly inhibited cell apoptosis by tunicamycin, an ERS inducer. Icariin also decreased generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), loss of mitochondrial membrane potential and activation of caspase-3. Moreover, icariin inhibited upregulation of endoplasmic reticulum markers, GRP78, GRP94 and CHOP, elicited by tunicamycin. These results indicated that icariin could protect H9c2 cardiomyoblast cells from ERS-mitochondrial apoptosis in vitro, the mechanisms may be associated with its inhibiting of GRP78, GRP94 and CHOP and decreasing ROS generation directly. It may be a potential agent for treating cardiovascular disease.
Keywords: icariin; endoplasmic reticulum stress; apoptosis; cardioprotection icariin; endoplasmic reticulum stress; apoptosis; cardioprotection
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Zhang, Q.; Li, H.; Wang, S.; Liu, M.; Feng, Y.; Wang, X. Icariin Protects Rat Cardiac H9c2 Cells from Apoptosis by Inhibiting Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2013, 14, 17845-17860.

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