05 November 2017
cardiovascular diseases (CVD), atherosclerosis, oxidative stress, macrophages foam cells, nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), scavenger receptor class B (CD36), scavenger receptor class A (SR-A), lectin-type oxidized LDL receptor 1 (LOX-1), ATP-binding cassette transporter A1 (ABCA1), ATP-binding cassette transporter G1 (ABCG1)
Oxidative stress is an important risk factor contributing to the pathogenesis of cardiovascular diseases. Oxidative stress that results from excessive reactive oxygen species (ROS) production accounts for impaired endothelial function, a process which promotes atherosclerotic lesion or fatty streaks formation (foam cells). Nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) is a transcription factor involved in cellular redox homeostasis. Upon exposure to oxidative stress, Nrf2 is dissociated from its inhibitor Keap-1 and translocated into the nucleus, where it results in the transcriptional activation of cell defense genes. Nrf2 has been demonstrated to be involved in the protection against foam cells formation by regulating the expression of antioxidant proteins (HO-1, Prxs, and GPx1), ATP-binding cassette (ABC) efflux transporters (ABCA1 and ABCG1) and scavenger receptors (scavenger receptor class B (CD36), scavenger receptor class A (SR-A) and lectin-type oxidized LDL receptor (LOX-1)). However, Nrf2 has also been reported to exhibit pro-atherogenic effects. A better understanding on the mechanism of Nrf2 in oxidative stress-induced cardiac injury, as well as the regulation of cholesterol uptake and efflux, are required before it can serve as a novel therapeutic target for cardiovascular diseases prevention and treatment.