Therapeutic effect and potential mechanism of pioglitazone in rats with severe acute pancreatitis
Caspase recruitment domain-containing protein 9 (Card9) is located upstream of the nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) inflammatory pathways. This study investigated the therapeutic effect and potential mechanism of pioglitazone in rats with severe acute pancreatitis (SAP). SAP was induced by a retrograde infusion of 5.0% sodium taurocholate into the biliopancreatic duct of Sprague Dawley rats (n=54), which were then treated with pioglitazone. Blood and pancreatic tissues were harvested at 3, 6, and 12 h after SAP induction. Pancreatic pathological damage was evaluated by hematoxylin and eosin staining. Serum amylase, serum pro-inflammatory cytokines, and pancreatic myeloperoxidase (MPO) activities were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The expression of Card9 mRNA and protein in pancreatic tissues was detected by real-time polymerase chain reaction and western blotting. Pioglitazone had a therapeutic effect in treating rats with SAP by decreasing the level of amylase activity, ameliorating pancreatic histological damage, decreasing serum pro-inflammatory cytokine levels and tissue MPO activity, and downregulating the expression of NF-κB, p38MAPK, and Card9 mRNAs and proteins (P<0.05). The present study demonstrated that the inhibition of Card9 expression could reduce the severity of SAP. Card9 has a role in the pathogenic mechanism of SAP.