Alcohol use disorders are common in the world. However, the development of novel drugs to prevent alcohol-induced brain damage is based upon an improved neurobiological understanding on the cellular changes that take place in the brain. We previously reported that ethanol exposure lowered cell proliferation and increased cell apoptosis in all cell types, but affects brain cell lines the most, while ethanol and the anti-depressant drug deprenyl, an monoamine oxidase B (MAO B) inhibitor, exposure in unison increases cell viability. Here we investigated the molecular mechanism of the neuroprotective effect of deprenyl (0.25 nM) on ethanol (75 mM)-induced harmful effect. Transforming growth factor-beta-inducible early gene 2 (TIEG2) is an activator for MAO B. MAO B levels increase has been shown to contribute to neuronal cell death. This study uses the neuronal cell line to address whether ethanol induced cell death is through the activation of TIEG2-MAO B apoptotic pathway, and whether deprenyl protects cells from the effects of alcohol through the inhibition of this pathway. We have found that ethanol exposure increases the levels of mRNA and protein/catalytic activity for both TIEG2 and MAO B, while ethanol and deprenyl exposure in unison reduce the expression of both TIEG2 and MAO B, however it increases cell viability. Additionally, TIEG2-overexpressed cells display more cellular death-induced by ethanol than control cells. In summary, this study demonstrates the role of TIEG2 in ethanol induced cell death. The inhibition of the TIEG2-MAO B pathway may be one of the mechanisms for the neuroprotective effect of deprenyl.
Keywords: alcohol, neuroprotection, transforming growth factor-beta-inducible early gene 2, monoamine oxidase B, cell viability