Breast cancer susceptibility protein 1 (BRCA1) rescues neurons from cerebral ischemia/reperfusion injury through NRF2-mediated antioxidant pathway.Redox Biol. 2018 09; 18:158-172.RB
Cellular oxidative stress plays a vital role in the pathological process of neural damage in cerebral ischemia/reperfusion (I/R). The breast cancer susceptibility protein 1 (BRCA1), a tumor suppressor, can modulate cellular antioxidant response and DNA repair. Yet the role of BRCA1 in cerebral I/R injury has not been explored. In this study, we observed that BRCA1 was mainly expressed in neurons and was up-regulated in response to I/R insult. Overexpression of BRCA1 attenuated reactive oxygen species production and lipid peroxidation. Enhanced BRCA1 expression promoted DNA double strand break repair through non-homologous end joining pathway. These effects consequently led to neuronal cell survival and neurological recovery. Mechanically, BRCA1 can interact with the nuclear factor (erythroid-derived 2)-like 2 (NRF2) through BRCA1 C-terminal (BRCT) domain. The cross-talk between BRCT and NRF2 activated the NRF2/Antioxidant Response Element signaling pathway and thus protected injured neurons during cerebral I/R. In conclusion, enhanced BRCA1 after cerebral I/R injury may attenuate or prevent neural damage from I/R via NRF2-mediated antioxidant pathway. The finding may provide a potential therapeutic target against ischemic stroke.