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Phytomedicine. 2011 Feb 15;18(4):327-33. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2010.07.013. Epub 2010 Aug 23.

The Amazonian herbal Marapuama attenuates cognitive impairment and neuroglial degeneration in a mouse Alzheimer model.

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1
Laboratório de Etnofarmacologia, Instituto de Ciências Básicas da Saúde, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Rua Sarmento Leite 500, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil. micheli.figueiro@gmail.com

Abstract

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is expected to affect more than 22 million people worldwide by 2025, causing devastating suffering and enormous costs to families and society. AD is a multifactorial disease, with a complex pathological mosaic. In rodents, AD-like dementia can be induced by cerebral microinjection of Aβ peptide, leading to amyloid deposits, amnesia and various features of neurodegeneration. Marapuama (Ptychopetalum olacoides) is regarded as a "brain tonic" in the Amazon region and shows a nootropic profile in rodents.

AIM OF THE STUDY:

Because a specific extract (POEE) of Marapuama was shown to possess promnesic and anti-amnesic properties, the aim of this study was to verify if POEE is also effective against Aβ(1-42)-induced cognitive deficit in mice. Additionally, Aβ deposits (Congo red), GFAP immunoreactivity (immunohistochemistry), and neurodegenerative changes in the hippocampal pyramidal layer (Nissl) were examined as measures of Aβ(1-42)-induced neurodegeneration.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

CF1 mice were subjected to the experimental Alzheimer model with the Aβ(1-42) i.c.v. administration. The effects of POEE 800 mg/kg were evaluated over 14 consecutive days of treatment.

RESULTS:

The data show that 14 days of oral treatment with POEE (800 mg/kg) was effective in preventing Aβ-induced cognitive impairment, without altering the levels of BDNF and with parallel reductions in Aβ deposits and astrogliosis. CA1 hippocampus loss induced by Aβ(1-42) was also diminished in POEE-treated mice.

CONCLUSION:

This study offers evidence of functional and neuroprotective effects of two weeks treatment with a Ptychopetalum olacoides extract against Aβ peptide-induced neurotoxicity in mice. Given the multifactorial nature of neurodegeneration, the considerable potential for an AChE inhibitor displaying associated neuroprotective properties such as here reported warrants further clinic evaluation.

PMID:
20739160
DOI:
10.1016/j.phymed.2010.07.013
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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