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Neurol Res. 2009 Feb;31(1):23-7. doi: 10.1179/174313208X332959. Epub 2008 Sep 3.

Neuroprotective potential of phase II enzyme inducer diallyl trisulfide.

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Department of Neurology, The Second Hospital of Hebei Medical University, Shijiazhuang 050000, China.


Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease, selectively involving the upper and lower motor neurons. Glutamate excitotoxicity and oxidative stress are important mechanisms for the pathogenesis of ALS. Nuclear-factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) is a master transcriptional regulator of many cytoprotective genes. Nrf2 signal pathway could induce a series of antioxidant enzyme, anti-inflammatory and antitoxic protein. The expression of these antioxidant enzymes and antioxidant proteins in nervous system exhibited broad neuroprotection against injury by glutamate. Diallyl trisulfide (DATS) was previously shown to induce many Nrf2 target genes in non-nervous cells. Our studies have shown that DATS at 50 microM caused activation of Nrf2 and Nrf2 target gene in rat spinal cord explants. DATS also protected motor neurons against glutamate-induced excitotoxicity. These have identified DATS as a promising neuroprotective agent and suggest that the activation of Nrf2 signal pathway may be a new strategy in neurodegeneration disease.

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