Elevated Neuroglobin Lessens Neuroinflammation and Alleviates Neurobehavioral Deficits Induced by Acute Inhalation of Combustion Smoke in the Mouse

Murat F. Gorgun, Ming Zhuo, Kelly Dineley, Ella Englander

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Acute inhalation of combustion smoke produces long-term neurologic deficits in survivors. To study the mechanisms that contribute to the development of neurologic deficits and identify targets for prevention, we developed a mouse model of acute inhalation of combustion smoke, which supports longitudinal investigation of mechanisms that underlie the smoke induced inimical sequelae in the brain. Using a transgenic mouse engineered to overexpress neuroglobin, a neuroprotective oxygen-binding globin protein, we previously demonstrated that elevated neuroglobin preserves mitochondrial respiration and attenuates formation of oxidative DNA damage in the mouse brain after smoke exposure. In the current study, we show that elevated neuronal neuroglobin attenuates the persistent inflammatory changes induced by smoke exposure in the mouse brain and mitigates concordant smoke-induced long-term neurobehavioral deficits. Specifically, we found that increases in hippocampal density of GFAP and Iba-1 positive cells that are detected post-smoke in wild-type mice are absent in the neuroglobin overexpressing transgenic (Ngb-tg) mice. Similarly, the smoke induced hippocampal myelin depletion is not observed in the Ngb-tg mice. Importantly, elevated neuroglobin alleviates behavioral and memory deficits that develop after acute smoke inhalation in the wild-type mice. Taken together, our findings suggest that the protective effects exerted by neuroglobin in the brains of smoke exposed mice afford protection from long-term neurologic sequelae of acute inhalation of combustion smoke. Our transgenic mouse provides a tool for assessing the potential of elevated neuroglobin as possible strategy for management of smoke inhalation injury.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2170-2181
Number of pages12
JournalNeurochemical Research
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019



  • Combustion smoke inhalation brain injury
  • Neurogenesis
  • Neuroglobin
  • Neuroinflammation
  • Neuroprotection
  • Novel object recognition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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