RIPK3 interactions with MLKL and CaMKII mediate oligodendrocytes death in the developing brain

Yi Qu, Jun Tang, Huiqing Wang, Shiping Li, Fengyan Zhao, Li Zhang, Q. Richard Lu, Dezhi Mu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) death is a key contributor to cerebral white matter injury (WMI) in the developing brain. A previous study by our group indicated that receptor-interacting proteins (RIPs) are crucial in mediating necroptosis in developing neurons. However, whether this mechanism is involved in OPCs death is unclear. We aimed to explore the mechanisms of RIP-mediated oligodendrocytes (OLs) death in the developing brain. Oligodendrocytes necroptosis was induced by oxygenglucose deprivation plus caspase inhibitor zVAD treatment (OGD/zVAD) in vitro. Western blotting and immunofluorescence were used to detect RIPK1, RIPK3, mixed lineage kinase domain-like protein (MLKL), and Ca2+ and calmodulin-dependent protein kinase IIä (CaMKIIä). Immunoprecipitation was used to assess the interactions between RIPK3 and RIPK1, MLKL, and CaMKIIä. Necrostatin-1 was used to disturb the RIPK3-RIPK1 interaction, and siRNA was used to inhibit RIPK3 or MLKL expression. Oligodendrocytes death was examined using PI staining, EM, and cell membrane leakage assays. In vivo, brain damage in neonatal rats was induced by hypoxia-ischemia (HI). This was followed by an examination of myelin development. We found that OGD/zVAD treatment upregulates the expression of RIPK3 and the interaction of RIPK3 with RIPK1, MLKL, and CaMKIIä. Inhibition of the RIPK3-MLKL or RIPK3-CaMKIIä interaction attenuates OLs death induced by OGD/zVAD. These protective mechanisms involve the translocation of MLKL to the OLs membrane, and the phosphorylation of CaMKIIä. However, inhibition of the RIPK3-RIPK1 interaction did not protect OLs death induced by OGD/zVAD. In vivo studies indicated that the disrupted development of myelin was attenuated after the inhibition of RIPK3-MLKL or RIPK3-CaMKIIä interaction. Taken together, our data indicate that RIPK3 is a key factor in protection against OLs death and abnormal myelin development via its interaction with MLKL and CaMKIIä after HI. This suggests that RIPK3 may be a potential target for the treatment of WMI in neonates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2629
JournalCell Death and Disease
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology
  • Cancer Research


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