Anticonvulsant agent DPP4 inhibitor sitagliptin downregulates CXCR3/RAGE pathway on seizure models

Publication date: September 2018
Source:Experimental Neurology, Volume 307
Author(s): Yunli Liu, Baohua Hou, Yusong Zhang, Yuanteng Fan, Biwen Peng, Wanhong Liu, Song Han, Jun Yin, Xiaohua He
Epilepsy is a common neurological disorder with a complex etiology. Our previous study demonstrated that dipeptidyl peptidase IV (DPP4) may be associated with the pathogenesis of epilepsy. However, whether the DPP4 inhibitor sitagliptin has an anticonvulsant effect and the underlying mechanism remain to be elucidated. In this study, we determined that sitagliptin remarkably attenuated the severity of seizures in a pentylenetetrazole (PTZ)-induced rat model. In addition, sitagliptin decreased epileptiform activity measured by electroencephalography (EEG) recordings and patch-clamp methods. Interestingly, sitagliptin pretreatment downregulated the RAGE-JAK2/STAT3 pathway and decreased the expression of CXCL4 and CXCR3. Moreover, CXCR3 knockdown decreased the expression of RAGE, JAK2 and STAT3 in cultured neurons, which suggests that CXCR3 is upstream of the RAGE-JAK2/STAT3 pathway. Altogether, our present data suggest that sitagliptin has an anticonvulsant effect, which might act via downregulation of the CXCL4/CXCR3 axis, followed by a decrease in RAGE and JAK2/STAT3 expression. Considering these effects, sitagliptin could be considered as a novel potential anticonvulsant drug.