Guang-Nian Zhao

Wuhan University, Wu-han-shih, Hubei, China

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Publications (7)46.67 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Neuronal death after ischemic stroke involves multiple pathophysiological events, as well as a complex molecular mechanism. Inhibiting a single therapeutic target that is involved in several ischemic signaling cascades may be a promising strategy for stroke management. Here, we report the versatile biological roles of tumor necrosis factor receptor-associated factor 3 (TRAF3) in ischemic stroke. Using several genetically manipulated mouse strains, we also demonstrated that TRAF3 inhibition can be neuroprotective. TRAF3 expression, which is robustly induced in response to ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury, was detected in neurons. Overexpression of TRAF3 in neurons led to aggravated neuronal loss and enlarged infarcts; these effects were reversed in TRAF3-knockout mice. Neuronal TRAF3 also contributed to c-Jun kinase-, nuclear factor κB- and Rac-1-induced neuronal death, inflammation, and oxidative stress. Mechanistically, we showed that TRAF3 interacts with transforming growth factor-β-activated kinase 1 (TAK1) and potentiates phosphorylation and activation of TAK1. Phosphorylated TAK1 sequentially initiated activation of nuclear factor κB, Rac-1/NADPH oxidase, and c-Jun kinase/c-Jun signaling cascades. Using a combination of adenoviruses encoding dominant-negative TAK1 and the TAK1 inhibitor 5Z-7-oxozeaenol, we demonstrated that the TRAF3-mediated activation of ischemic cascades was TAK1-dependent. More importantly, the adverse phenotypes observed in TRAF3-overexpressing mice were completely reversed when the TRAF3-TAK1 interaction was prevented. Therefore, we have shown that TRAF3 is a central regulator of ischemic pathways, including nuclear factor κB, Rac-1, and c-Jun kinase signaling, via its interaction with and activation of TAK1. Furthermore, certain components of the TRAF3-TAK1 signaling pathway are potentially promising therapeutic targets in ischemic stroke. © 2015 American Heart Association, Inc.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2015 · Hypertension
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    ABSTRACT: The hallmarks of hepatic ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury, a common clinical problem that occurs during liver surgical procedures, include severe cell death and inflammatory responses that contribute to early graft failure and a higher incidence of organ rejection. Unfortunately, effective therapeutic strategies are limited. Tumor necrosis factor receptor (TNFR)-associated factor (TRAF) 3 transduces apoptosis and/or inflammation-related signaling pathways to regulate cell survival and cytokine production. However, the role of TRAF3 in hepatic I/R-induced liver damage remains unknown. Hepatocyte- or myeloid cell-specific TRAF3 knockdown (KO) or transgenic (TG) mice were subjected to an I/R model in vivo, and in vitro experiments were performed by treating primary hepatocytes from these mice with hypoxia/reoxygenation (H/R) stimulation. The function of TRAF3 in I/R-induced liver damage and the potential underlying mechanisms were investigated through various phenotypic analyses and biological approaches. Hepatocyte-specific, but not myeloid cell-specific, TRAF3 deficiency reduced cell death, inflammatory cell infiltration, and cytokine production in both in vivo and in vitro hepatic I/R models, whereas hepatic TRAF3 overexpression resulted in the opposite effects. Mechanistically, TRAF3 directly binds to TAK1, which enhances the activation of the downstream NF-κB and JNK pathways. Importantly, inhibition of TAK1 almost completely reversed the TRAF3 overexpression-mediated exacerbation of I/R injury. TRAF3 is a novel hepatic I/R mediator that promotes liver damage and inflammation via TAK1-dependent activation of the JNK and NF-κB pathways. Inhibition of hepatic TRAF3 may represent a promising approach to protect the liver against I/R injury-related diseases. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier B.V.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2015 · Journal of Hepatology
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    ABSTRACT: Significance statement: OSM, a member of the gp130 cytokine family, regulates neuronal function and survival. OSM engages a second receptor, either LIFRα or OSMRβ, before recruiting gp130. However, it is not clear whether OSM/OSMRβ signaling is involved in neuroprotection in the setting of ischemic stroke. Recent studies show that, compared with mouse disease models, the OSM receptor system in rats more closely resembles that in humans. In the present study, we use genetic manipulations of OSMRβ in both mouse and rat stroke models to demonstrate that OSMRβ in neurons is critical for neuronal survival during cerebral ischemic/reperfusion. Interestingly, administration of human OSM also leads to improved stroke outcomes. Therefore, OSM may represent a promising drug candidate for stroke treatment.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2015 · The Journal of Neuroscience : The Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience
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    ABSTRACT: The adaptor protein Src homology 2-B3 (SH2B3), which belongs to a subfamily of Src homology 2 proteins, is a broad inhibitor of growth factors and cytokine signaling in hematopoietic cells. However, the role of SH2B3 in nonhematopoietic systems, particularly cardiomyocytes, has not been defined. In this study, we observed noticeable increase in SH2B3 protein expression during pathological cardiac remodeling in both humans and rodents. Follow-up in vitro gain- and loss-of-function studies suggested that SH2B3 promotes the cardiomyocyte hypertrophy response. Consistent with the cell phenotype, SH2B3 knockout (SH2B3(-/-)) mice exhibited attenuated cardiac remodeling with preserved cardiac function after chronic pressure overload. Conversely, cardiac-specific SH2B3 overexpression aggravated pressure overload-triggered cardiac hypertrophy, fibrosis, and dysfunction. Mechanistically, SH2B3 accelerates and exacerbates cardiac remodeling through the activation of focal adhesion kinase, which, in turn, activates the prohypertrophic downstream phosphoinositide 3-kinase-AKT-mammalian target of rapamycin/glycogen synthase kinase 3β signaling pathway. Finally, we generated a novel SH2B3 knockout rat line and further confirmed the protective effects of SH2B3 deficiency on cardiac remodeling across species. Collectively, our data indicate that SH2B3 functions as a novel and effective modulator of cardiac remodeling and failure. © 2015 American Heart Association, Inc.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2015 · Hypertension
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    ABSTRACT: Cardiac hypertrophy, a common early symptom of heart failure, is regulated by numerous signaling pathways. Here, we identified tumor necrosis factor receptor-associated factor 3 (TRAF3), an adaptor protein in tumor necrosis factor-related signaling cascades, as a key regulator of cardiac hypertrophy in response to pressure overload. TRAF3 expression was upregulated in hypertrophied mice hearts and failing human hearts. Four weeks after aortic banding, cardiac-specific conditional TRAF3-knockout mice exhibited significantly reduced cardiac hypertrophy, fibrosis, and dysfunction. Conversely, transgenic mice overexpressing TRAF3 in the heart developed exaggerated cardiac hypertrophy in response to pressure overload. TRAF3 also promoted an angiotensin II- or phenylephrine-induced hypertrophic response in isolated cardiomyocytes. Mechanistically, TRAF3 directly bound to TANK-binding kinase 1 (TBK1), causing increased TBK1 phosphorylation in response to hypertrophic stimuli. This interaction between TRAF3 and TBK1 further activated AKT signaling, which ultimately promoted the development of cardiac hypertrophy. Our findings not only reveal a key role of TRAF3 in regulating the hypertrophic response but also uncover TRAF3-TBK1-AKT as a novel signaling pathway in the development of cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure. This pathway may represent a potential therapeutic target for this pathological process. © 2015 American Heart Association, Inc.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2015 · Hypertension
  • Guang-Nian Zhao · Ding-Sheng Jiang · Hongliang Li
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    ABSTRACT: The interferon-regulatory factor (IRF) family comprises nine members in mammals. Although this transcription factor family was originally thought to function primarily in the immune system, contributing to both the innate immune response and the development of immune cells, recent advances have revealed that IRFs plays critical roles in other biological processes, such as metabolism. Accordingly, abnormalities in the expression and/or function of IRFs have increasingly been linked to disease. Herein, we provide an update on the recent progress regarding the regulation of immune responses and immune cell development associated with IRFs. Additionally, we discuss the relationships between IRFs and immunity, metabolism, and disease, with a particular focus on the role of IRFs as stress sensors. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: From Genome to Function.
    No preview · Article · May 2014 · Biochimica et Biophysica Acta
  • Guang-Nian Zhao · Ding-Sheng Jiang · Hongliang Li
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The interferon-regulatory factor (IRF) family comprises nine members in mammals. Although this transcription factor family was originally thought to function primarily in the immune system, contributing to both the innate immune response and the development of immune cells, recent advances have revealed that IRFs plays critical roles in other biological processes, such as metabolism. Accordingly, abnormalities in the expression and/or function of IRFs have increasingly been linked to disease. Herein, we provide an update on the recent progress regarding the regulation of immune responses and immune cell development associated with IRFs. Additionally, we discuss the relationships between IRFs and immunity, metabolism, and disease, with a particular focus on the role of IRFs as stress sensors. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: From Genome to Function.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2014 · Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) - Molecular Basis of Disease