The expression of ERK and JNK in patients with an endemic osteochondropathy, Kashin-Beck disease

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Kashin–Beck disease (KBD) is a chronic, endemic osteochondropathy. Its etiopathogenesis is still obscure until now. Epidemiological observation has shown that low selenium play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of KBD. Extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERKs) and C-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), members of the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) superfamily, play an important role in cell proliferation and differentiation. Nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB), an important signaling mediator for inflammatory and immune responses, is involved in the regulation of osteoclastogenesis. In the present study, we investigated the expression of ERK and JNK signal molecular, as well as nuclear factor-κB in the pathogenesis of Kashin-Beck disease, evaluated the effect of selenium on ERK signal pathway. The expression levels of ERK and JNK signal pathway, as well as nuclear factor-κB were investigated for 218 patients and 209 controls by immunoblot analysis in whole blood. Evaluated the effect of selenium on ERK signal pathway by Na2SeO3 treatment. The protein levels of pRaf-1, pMek1/2 and pErk1/2 decreased significantly in KBD patients, p-JNK and NF-κB increased in KBD patients. Furthermore, Na2SeO3 treatment improved the reduction of proteins in ERK signal pathway. These findings indicated that ERK and JNK signaling pathways, as well as the expression level of NF-κB signaling molecular are important contributor to the pathogenesis of KBD. Selenium stimulates the phosphorylation of the ERK signaling pathway.

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