Our earlier studies have demonstrated that the cigarette smoke in the form of cigarette smoke condensate (CSC) causes growth arrest of a mouse spermatocyte cell line [GC-2spd(ts)] through activation of the AHR-NRF2 pathway. The present study demonstrates the CSC-activatedp38 and ERK MAPK signaling in GC-2spd(ts) via arylhydrocarbon receptor (AHR). Pharmacological inhibition by using AHR-antagonist,or p38 MAPK and ERK (MEK1) inhibitors significantly abrogates CSC-induced growth arrest by AHR and MAPK inactivation. QRT-PCR, western blot, and immunofluorescence of Ahr-target of Nrf2, and stress-inducible growth suppressive Atf3 and E2f4 following treatments indicate a crosstalk among these pathways. Regulation of Atf3 by Nrf2 and Ahr through RNA interference suggests the existenceof a cross-regulatory loop between the targets. CSC induction of E2f4 via Atf3 and its regulation by pharmacological inhibitors reveal a possible regulatory mechanism of growth inhibitory CSC. SiRNA silencing of Ahr, Nrf2, Atf3, and E2f4 genes and downregulationof cyclins by CSC corroborate the growth inhibitory effect of cigarette smoke. Thus, the data obtained suggest that the CSC-mediatedMAPKs and AHR-NRF2 crosstalks lay the molecular basis for the growth arrest and cell death of spermatocytes.
- p38 MAPK