Calpain-mediated cleavage of Fbxw7 during excitotoxicity

Yeon Uk Ko, Hwa Young Song, Won Ki Kim, Tae Young Yune, Nuri Yun, Young J. Oh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Neuronal cell death induced by ischemic injury has been attributed to glutamate receptor-mediated excitotoxicity, which is known to be accompanied by Ca2+ overload in the cytoplasm with concomitant activation of calcium-dependent mechanisms. More specifically, the overactivation of calpains, calcium-dependent cysteine proteases, have been associated with neuronal cell death following glutamate treatment. Previously, we observed decreased expression levels of F-box/WD repeat domain-containing protein 7 (Fbxw7) after the hyperactivation of cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) in cortical neurons challenged with glutamate. As determined using in vitro calpain cleavage assays, we demonstrated that the cleavage of Fbxw7 was mediated by activated calpain and attenuated in the presence of the calpain inhibitor, calpeptin. Using the rat middle cerebral artery occlusion model, we confirmed that Fbxw7 was indeed cleaved by activated calpain in the ipsilateral cortex. Based on our data, we hypothesize that the negative regulation of Fbxw7 by calpain may contribute to neuronal cell death and that the preservation of Fbxw7 by the inhibition of calpain, Cdk5, or both composes a novel protective mechanism following excitotoxicity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number135265
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Sept 25


  • Calpain
  • Cleavage
  • Excitotoxicity
  • Fbxw7
  • Glutamate
  • Middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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