Sitagliptin attenuates myocardial apoptosis via activating LKB-1/AMPK/Akt pathway and suppressing the activity of GSK-3β and p38α/MAPK in a rat model of diabetic cardiomyopathy.Biomed Pharmacother. 2018 Nov; 107:347-358.BP
The present study aimed to investigate the protective effect of sitagliptin, a dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitor, on diabetic cardiomyopathy (DCM)-associated apoptosis and if this effect is mediated via modulating the activity of the survival kinases; AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) and Akt & the apoptotic kinases; glycogen synthase kinase-3 β (GSK-3β) and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (p38MAPK). Diabetes was induced by a single intraperitoneal injection of streptozotocin (55 mg/kg). Diabetic rats were treated with sitagliptin (10 mg/kg/day, p.o.) and metformin (200 mg/kg/day, p.o. as positive control) for six weeks. Chronic hyperglycemia resulted in elevation of serum cardiac biomarkers reflecting cardiac damage which was supported by H&E stain. The mRNA levels of collagen types I and III were augmented reflecting cardiac fibrosis and hypertrophy which was supported by Masson trichome stain and enhanced phosphorylation of p38MAPK. Cardiac protein levels of cleaved casapse-3, BAX were elevated, whereas, the levels of Bcl-2 and p-BAD were reduced indicating cardiac apoptosis which could be attributed to the diabetes-induced reduced phosphorylation of Akt and AMPK with concomitant augmented activation of GSK-3β and p38MAPK. Protein levels of liver kinase B-1, the upstream kinase of AMPK were also supressed. Sitagliptin administration alleviated the decreased phosphorylation of AMPK and Akt, inactivated the GSK-3β and p38 AMPK, therefore, attenuating the apoptosis and hypertrophy induced by hyperglycemia in the diabetic heart. In conclusion, sitagliptin exhibits valuable therapeutic potential in the management of DCM by attenuating apoptosis. The underlying mechanism may involve the modulating activity of AMPK, Akt, GSK-3β and p38MAPK.