Journal of neuroimmunology

The chemokine CCL2 activates p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase pathway in cultured rat hippocampal cells.

PMID 18584881


Emerging evidence indicates that chemokines can regulate both the physiology and biochemistry of CNS neurons and glia. In the current study, Western blot analysis showed that in rat hippocampal neuronal/glial cultures the signal transduction pathway activated by CCL2, a chemokine expressed in the normal brain and at elevated levels during neuroinflammation, involves a G-protein coupled receptor, p38 MAPK as well as its immediate upstream kinase MKK3/6, and the downstream transcription factor CREB. ERK 1/2 and the transcription factors STAT1 and STAT3 do not play a prominent role. CCL2 also altered Ca(2+) influx and synaptic network activity in the hippocampal neurons. These results suggest an important role for p38 MAPK and CREB in hippocampal actions of CCL2.