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Brain Res. 2011 Feb 16;1374:100-9. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2010.11.061. Epub 2010 Nov 25.

Resveratrol improves neuron protection and functional recovery in rat model of spinal cord injury.

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The Key Laboratory of Biomedical Information Engineering of Ministry of Education, School of Life Science and Technology, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Xianning West Road, Xi'an, Shaanxi 710049, China.


Researches on the pathology of spinal cord injury (SCI) have been recently focused on oxidative radicals stress and inflammation associated neuronal apoptosis. Resveratrol, a natural phenolic compound, has been extensively studied and shown a wide variety of health beneficial effects, including prevention of cardiovascular diseases and cancer and neuroprotective activities. However, the study of its potential role in neuroprotection and underlying mechanism in SCI model has been limited. In this study, we investigated the effect of resveratrol on neurologic functions and histopathologic changes after SCI and the mechanism underlying its neuroprotective effects. First, neuronal function after SCI was evaluated with Basso Beattle Bresnahan locomotor rating scale (BBB) and the result showed that injured animals treated with resveratrol showed a significant increase in BBB scores. Further, histopathological alternations were evaluated with HE and Nissl staining, showing a restored neural morphology and an increase of the number of neurons after resveratrol administration. To explore the underlying mechanism, anti-oxidation effect of resveratrol was assessed by measuring superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity and malondialdehyde (MDA) level after SCI. Resveratrol treatment reversed the decrease of SOD activity and increase of MDA level caused by SCI, suggesting its anti-oxidation role in response to the injury. In addition, resveratrol treatment suppressed immunoreactivity and expression of inflammatory cytokines including IL-1β, IL-10, TNF-α, and myeloperoxidase (MPO) after SCI, suggesting an anti-inflammation effect of resveratrol. Finally, resveratrol treatment inhibited injury-induced apoptosis as assessed by electrical microscopy and TUNEL staining and affected the expression level of apoptosis-related gene Bax, Bcl-2 and caspase-3, which indicated its anti-apoptosis role after SCI. Our data suggest that resveratrol significantly promotes the recovery of rat dorsal neuronal function after SCI, and this effect is related to its characteristics of anti-oxidation, anti-inflammation and anti-apoptosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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