ALA/LA ameliorates glucose toxicity on HK-2 cells by attenuating oxidative stress and apoptosis through the ROS/p38/TGF-β1 pathway

Mingxia Jiang, Haifen Zhang, Lijie Zhai, Bianliang Ye, Yin Cheng, Chengkai Zhai*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Background: Growing evidence indicates that oxidative stress (OS) plays a pivotal role in Diabetic nephropathy (DN). In a previous study we demonstrated that ALA/LA protected HK-2 cells against high glucose-induced cytotoxicity. So we aimed to establish the glucose injury model of HK-2 cells and investigate the beneficial effects of ALA/LA on high glucose-induced excessive production of TGF-β1 and the possible mechanisms mediating the effects. Methods: The expression of OS markers in high glucose-induced HK-2 cells treated with ALA/LA., including the antioxidant enzymes and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, as well as the apoptosis rate were assayed by ELISA and flow cytometry. The p38/transforming growth factor β1 (TGF-β1) signal pathway were measured by real-time RT-PCR and western blot. Results: The modeling condition of glucose toxicity on HK-2 cells was at the glucose concentration of 40.9 mM. ALA/LA can significantly increase the activities of antioxidant enzymes and decrease ROS production stimulated by high glucose. The study also found that ALA/LA caused a decrease in the apoptosis rate and TGF-β1 level of HK-2 cells under high glucose stress through the ROS/p38 pathway. Conclusions: ALA/LA exerts protective effects in vitro through inhibition of ROS generation, down regulation of the activation of the p38MAPK pathway and the expression of TGF-β1 in HK-2 cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number216
JournalLipids in Health and Disease
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 16 2017


  • apoptosis
  • glucose toxicity
  • HK-2 cells
  • linoleic acid (LA)
  • oxidative stress
  • ROS/p38/TGF-β pathway
  • α-linolenic acid (ALA)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'ALA/LA ameliorates glucose toxicity on HK-2 cells by attenuating oxidative stress and apoptosis through the ROS/p38/TGF-β<sub>1</sub> pathway'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this