Bakuchiol ameliorates cerebral ischemia-reperfusion injury by modulating NLRP3 inflammasome and Nrf2 signaling.
Respir Physiol Neurobiol. 2021 10 ;292:103707. Epub 2021 Jun 1. PMID: 34087492
Cerebral ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury is a common cerebrovascular disease with high mortality. Bakuchiol (BAK), extracted from the seeds of psoralea corylifolia, exhibits anti-inflammatory effects on lung, kidney and heart injuries. However, the effect of BAK on brain I/R injury remains elusive. In our study, a cerebral I/R model in mice was established by 1-h middle cerebral artery occlusion and 24-h reperfusion (1-h MCAO/24-h R). Prior to it, mice were gavaged with BAK (2.5 or 5 mg/kg) per day for 5 days. BAK pre-treatment improved neurological deficit, and reduced infarct volume, cerebral edema and neuronal injury in MCAO/R-injured mice. BAK decreased the number of Iba1-immunoreactive cells in the brain, indicating a reduction of microglial activation. BAK also reducedthe expressions of NLRP3, ASC, cleaved-caspase-1, IL-1β and IL-18. BAK triggered Nrf2 nuclear accumulation and elevated HO-1 level. Further, the role of BAK was explored in BV-2 microglia with 3-h oxygen-glucose deprivation/24-h reperfusion (3-h OGD/24-h R). It was found that the functions of BAK in vitro were consistent with those in vivo, as manifested by reduced NLRP3 inflammasome and activated Nrf2 signaling. In addition, BV-2 cells were treated with Brusatol, an Nrf2 inhibitor. Results showed that Brusatol partially reversed the protective effect of BAK on OGD/R-injured BV-2 cells, further confirming that BAK might exhibit its anti-inflammatory property via activating Nrf2 signaling. In short, BAK is more meaningful in improving cerebral ischemic injury through suppressing NLRP3-mediated inflammatory response and activating the Nrf2 signaling pathway.