Obligatory Role of AMPK Activation and Antioxidant Defense Pathway in the Regulatory Effects of Metformin on Cellular Protection and Prevention of Lens Opacity

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4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Increasing levels of oxidative-stress due to deterioration of the Nrf2 (NFE2-related factor)/ARE (antioxidant response element) pathway is found to be a primary cause of aging pathobiology. Metformin having anti-aging effects can delay/halt aging-related diseases. Herein, using lens epithelial cell lines (LECs) of human (h) or mouse (m) and aging h/m primary LECs along with lenses as model systems, we demonstrated that Metformin could correct deteriorated Bmal1/Nrf2/ARE pathway by reviving AMPK-activation, and transcriptional activities of Bmal1/Nrf2, resulting in increased antioxidants enzymatic activity and expression of Phase II enzymes. This ensued reactive oxygen species (ROS) mitigation with cytoprotection and prevention of lens opacity in response to aging/oxidative stress. It was intriguing to observe that Metformin internalized lens/LECs and upregulated OCTs (Organic Cation Transporters). Mechanistically, we found that Metformin evoked AMPK activation-dependent increase of Bmal1, Nrf2, and antioxidants transcription by promoting direct E-Box and ARE binding of Bmal1 and Nrf2 to the promoters. Loss-of-function and disruption of E-Box/ARE identified that Metformin acted by increasing Bmal1/Nrf2-mediated antioxidant expression. Data showed that AMPK-activation was a requisite for Bmal1/Nrf2-antioxidants-mediated defense, as pharmacologically inactivating AMPK impeded the Metformin’s effect. Collectively, the results for the first-time shed light on the hitherto incompletely uncovered crosstalk between the AMPK and Bmal1/Nrf2/antioxidants mediated by Metformin for blunting oxidative/aging-linked pathobiology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number3021
JournalCells
Volume11
Issue number19
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2022

Keywords

  • Bmal1
  • Metformin
  • Nrf2
  • Peroxiredoxin 6
  • age-related diseases
  • aging
  • antioxidant response
  • antioxidants
  • oxidative stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology

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