Statins have been associated with arrest of DNA synthesis and proliferation in glial cells. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Obligatory relationship between the sterol biosynthetic pathway and DNA synthesis and cellular proliferation in glial primary cultures.
J Neurochem. 1986 Apr ;46(4):1283-91. PMID: 3633306
Primary cultures of newborn rat brain, which are composed predominantly of astroglia, were used to examine the relationship between the sterol biosynthetic pathway and DNA synthesis and cellular proliferation. Reduction of the fetal calf serum content of the culture medium from 10 to 0.1% (vol/vol) for an interval of 48 h between days 4 and 6 in culture resulted in a quiescent state characterized by inhibition of DNA synthesis and cellular proliferation. When 10% fetal calf serum was returned to the medium for these quiescent cells, within 24 h DNA synthesis increased markedly. Preceding the rise in DNA synthesis was an increase in sterol synthesis, which occurred within 12 h of the return of the quiescent cells to the 10% fetal calf serum. Exposure of the quiescent cells to mevinolin, a specific inhibitor of sterol synthesis at the 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase step, completely inhibited the increase in DNA synthesis that followed serum repletion. The increase in total protein synthesis that followed serum repletion was not similarly inhibited by mevinolin. When mevinolin was removed after causing the 24-h inhibition of DNA synthesis, the cultured cells underwent active DNA synthesis and proliferation. Thus, inhibition of the sterol biosynthetic pathway resulted in a specific and reversible inhibition of DNA synthesis and glial proliferation in developing glial cells. These findings establish a valuable system for the examination of glial proliferation, i.e., primary glial cultures subjected to serum depletion and subsequent repletion. Moreover, the data establish an obligatory relationship between the sterol biosynthetic pathway and DNA synthesis and cellular proliferation in developing glia.