Wogonin inhibits microglial cell migration via suppression of nuclear factor-kappa B activity

Hua Zi Piao, In Young Choi, Jin Sun Park, Hee Sun Kim, Jae Hoon Cheong, Kun Ho Son, Su Jin Jeon, Kwang Ho Ko, Won Ki Kim

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41 Scopus citations


Previously, we and others have demonstrated that wogonin, an active component from the root of Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi, has a neuroprotective effect in cerebral ischemic insult. The neuroprotective effect of wogonin may at least in part be due to its anti-inflammatory properties. Microglial cells, well-known residential macrophages in the central nervous system, migrate to the ischemic lesion and play a pivotal role in the development of chronic inflammation. In the present study, we observed that wogonin potently inhibited microglial migration toward a chemokine, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1). The anti-migratory effect of wogonin was provoked at nanomolar concentrations, at which wogonin did not significantly inhibit the production of cytokines and chemokines. NF-κB has previously shown to regulate microglial cell migration, and activation of cAMP-signaling pathway has also been associated with inhibition of microglial cell motility. In the present study, wogonin at low micromolar concentrations completely suppressed the activity of NF-κB in MCP-1-stimulated microglia, and NF-κB inhibitors such as N-acetyl cysteine and pyrrolidinedithiocarbamate inhibited the MCP-1-induced migration of microglial cells. However, wogonin did not stimulate the production of cAMP in microglial cells. Our results indicate that the anti-inflammatory activity of wogonin is exerted at least in part by suppressing microglial cell motility via inhibition of NF-κB activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1658-1662
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Immunopharmacology
Issue number12
StatePublished - 10 Dec 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by a grant (L-05-03-2-CHM-628-B) from KFDA, and in part by a grant (M103KV010010-06K2201-01010) from Brain Research Center of the 21st Century Frontier Research Program funded by the Ministry of Science and Technology, Republic of Korea. Choi IY is supported by the Brain Korea 21 Project in 2008.


  • MCP-1
  • Microglia
  • Migration
  • NF-κB
  • Wogonin
  • cAMP


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