Janus kinase 2, an early target of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor-mediated neuroprotection against Aβ-(1-42) amyloid

Seán Shaw, Merouane Bencherif, Mario B. Marrero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

157 Scopus citations


The molecular mechanisms of α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR)-mediated neuroprotection remain unclear. In this study we provide evidence that nicotine stimulation of α7 nAChR transduces signals to phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase and Akt via Janus kinase 2 (JAK2) in a cascade, which results in neuroprotection. Exposure to β-amyloid results in the activation of the apoptotic enzyme caspase-3 and cleavage of the DNA-repairing enzyme poly-(ADP-ribose) polymerase. This cascade is inhibited by nicotine through JAK2 activation, and these effects are blocked by preincubation with the JAK2-specific inhibitor AG-490. We also found that pretreatment of cells with angiotensin II blocks the nicotine-induced activation of JAK2 via the AT2 receptor and completely prevents α7 nAChR-mediated neuroprotective effects further suggesting a pivotal role for JAK2. These findings identify novel mechanisms of receptor interactions relevant to neuronal viability and suggest novel therapeutic strategies to optimize neuroprotection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)44920-44924
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number47
StatePublished - Nov 22 2002


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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