Protease-activated receptor-1 expression in rat microglia after trimethyltin treatment

Maria Concetta Geloso, Valentina Corvino, Stefania Lucia Nori, Barbara Panetta, Fabrizio Michetti, Elena Pompili, Cinzia Fabrizi, Lorenzo Fumagalli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


In the nervous system, protease-activated receptors (PARs), which are activated by thrombin and other extracellular proteases, are expressed widely at both neuronal and glial levels and have been shown to be involved in several brain pathologies. As far as the glial receptors are concerned, previous experiments performed in rat hippocampus showed that expression of PAR-1, the prototypic member of the PAR family, increased in astrocytes both in vivo and in vitro following treatment with trimethyltin (TMT). TMT is an organotin compound that induces severe hippocampal neurodegeneration associated with astrocyte and microglia activation. In the present experiments, the authors extended their investigation to microglial cells. In particular, by 7 days following TMT intoxication in vivo, confocal immunofluorescence revealed an evident PAR-1-related specific immunoreactivity in OX-42-positive microglial cells of the CA3 and hilus hippocampal regions. In line with the in vivo results, when primary rat microglial cells were treated in vitro with TMT, a strong upregulation of PAR-1 was observed by immunocytochemistry and Western blot analysis. These data provide further evidence that PAR-1 may be involved in microglial response to brain damage.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)302-311
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • glia
  • nervous system
  • neurodegeneration
  • protease-activated receptor-1
  • trimethyltin


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