2004 Volume 54 Issue 6 Pages 575-583
Using a metabolic inhibition buffer as an ischemic model, we show here that KR-31378, a cardioselective ATP-sensitive potassium channel opener, protects H9c2 cells from chemical hypoxia (CH)-induced cell death. Our previous study showed that CH downregulated caspase activities, but led to differential activation of mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs) in H9c2 cells. The repression of CH-induced c-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK)/p38 MAPK activation resulted in partial protection against CH- induced cell death, implying JNK/p38 MAPK's causative role in CH-induced cell death. This study furthers that research and examines if KR-31378's protective effect came from modulating MAPK activity and/or caspase activity in H9c2 cells. Although KR-31378 did not restore downregulated caspase-3 activity, it did block the activation of JNK and p38 MAPK in a dose-dependent manner. Extracellular signal-regulated kinase activity was not recovered by KR-31378 treatment. CH-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation was suppressed by KR-31378. Thus our results indicate that the cardioprotective effect of KR-31378 in CH is due, at least in part, to the differential inhibition of MAPKs.