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BRX-235 (Iroxanadine), a novel drug developed by Biorex (Hungary), was previously characterized as a vasculoprotector against atherosclerosis, an activator of p38 kinase, and an enhancer of stress-responsive heat shock protein (Hsp) expression. The present data demonstrate that BRX-235 may improve survival of vascular endothelial cells (ECs) following ischemia/reperfusion stress. ECs cultured from human umbilical veins were exposed to hypoxia/reoxygenation to mimic ischemia/reperfusion. Caspase activation and apoptosis were monitored in the reoxygenated cells. Addition of BRX-235 (0.1-1 microM) to culture medium prior to hypoxia or at start of reoxygenation significantly reduced the caspase-dependent apoptosis. The cytoprotection conferred by the pre-hypoxic drug administration was sensitive to quercetin and seems to be based on enhanced Hsp accumulation in stressed ECs. In the case of post-hypoxic drug administration, the cytoprotection was strongly inhibited by SB202190 and SB203580 and appears to be associated with enhanced p38 kinase activation in reoxygenated ECs.


A E Kabakov, K R Budagova, Y V Malyutina, D S Latchman, P Csermely. Pharmacological attenuation of apoptosis in reoxygenated endothelial cells. Cellular and molecular life sciences : CMLS. 2004 Dec;61(24):3076-86

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PMID: 15583868

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