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Neurosci Lett. 2000 Mar 10;281(2-3):123-6.

Partial neuroprotection of in vivo excitotoxic brain damage by chronic administration of the red wine antioxidant agent, trans-resveratrol in rats.

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Department of Biology, University of Bologna, Via Selmi 3, 40126, Bologna, Italy.


The antioxidant compound trans-resveratrol, is found in substantial amount in several types of red wine and is considered one of the substances responsible for the lower incidence of coronary heart diseases among regular consumers of such wines, an effect also known as the French paradox. It has also been proposed that resveratrol may have beneficial effects against neurodegenerative diseases. We report here that chronic administration of resveratrol to young-adult rats, significantly protects from the damage caused by systemic injection of the excitotoxin kainic acid, in the olfactory cortex and the hippocampus. The same treatment, however, is not able to give any significant protection in an ex vivo model of simulated ischemia on hippocampal slices in vitro. This first evidence of a partial neuroprotective action of chronic administration of resveratrol in vivo, suggests that other models of neurodegenerative injury, and in particular of excitotoxic brain damage, should be investigated in order to assess the potentiality for resveratrol to be used as a pharmacological tool for neuroprotection.

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