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Am J Chin Med. 2010;38(1):113-25.

Icariin inhibits the increased inward calcium currents induced by amyloid-beta(25-35) peptide in CA1 pyramidal neurons of neonatal rat hippocampal slice.

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Department of Integrated Chinese and Western Medicine, First Hospital, Peking University, Beijing, China.


Overload of intracellular calcium caused by amyloid-beta peptide has been implicated in the pathogenesis of neuronal damage in Alzheimer's disease. Voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs) provide one of the major sources of Ca(2+) entry into cells. Here, we investigated whether icariin had effect on the changes of calcium currents induced by Abeta(25-35) in hippocampal pyramidal neurons. Using whole-cell patch-clamp, we showed that Abeta(25-35) enhanced the inward Ba(2+) and Ca(2+) currents. The currents were partially inhibited by Ni(2+) and completely suppressed by Cd(2+), indicating that Abeta(25-35) disrupts intracellular calcium homeostasis via the modulation of both L- and T-type channels. Furthermore, icariin nearly complete suppressed the abnormal inward calcium currents induced by Abeta(25-35) in a dose-dependant manner. Our findings suggest that the potential neuroprotective effect of icariin on Abeta(25-35)-induced neurotoxicity via the balance intracelluar calcium homeostasis.

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