, Volume 36, Issue 6, pp 1286–1294 | Cite as

Ghrelin Inhibits High Glucose-Induced PC12 Cell Apoptosis by Regulating TLR4/NF-κB Pathway



Ghrelin has a protective effect on diabetic encephalopathy. To expound the protective mechanism, we investigated the effects of ghrelin on high glucose-induced cell apoptosis and intracellular signaling in cultured PC12, which is a suitable model for studying neuronal cell death. High glucose-induced PC12 apoptosis was significantly inhibited by co-treatment of ghrelin. Sustaining inflammatory response is one of the molecular mechanisms of diabetic encephalopathy and TLR4 signaling has close relationship with inflammatory response. But there is no report about the biologic role of toll-like receptor 4/nuclear factor-κB (TLR4/NF-κB) signaling in controlling high glucose-induced PC12 apoptosis by ghrelin. In this study, we found that TLR4/NF-κB pathway was activated by high glucose stimulation in PC12 and significantly alleviated by the co-treatment of ghrelin. From these findings, we made the conclusion that ghrelin could attenuate the symptoms of diabetic encephalopathy, which alleviates inflammatory reaction of diabetic encephalopathy by regulating TLR4/NF-κB pathway.


PC12 ghrelin high glucose TLR4/NF-κB pathway inflammation 



Toll-like receptor 4/nuclear factor-κB


High glucose


Transmission electron microscopy


Fetal bovine serum


Dulbecco’s modified Eagle’s medium


Dimethyl sulfoxide




Sodium dodecyl sulfate




American Type Culture Collection


Phosphate-buffered saline


Myeloid differentiation primary response gene 88


Human tumor necrosis factor receptor-associated factor 6



Our work was supported by grants from both the Key Projects of Medical Science sponsored by Chongqing Municipal Health Bureau in the People’s Republic of China (2010-1-8) and the Natural Science Foundation of Chongqing in the People’s Republic of China (CSTC, 2010BB5396). The study is also supported by the National Foundation of Natural Science of China (no. 81170752).

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no competing interests.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xiaoyan Liu
    • 1
  • Qian Xiao
    • 1
  • Kexiang Zhao
    • 1
  • Yuan Gao
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Geriatrics, The First Affiliated HospitalChongqing Medical UniversityChongqingChina

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