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Int J Mol Sci. 2012;13(9):10899-910. doi: 10.3390/ijms130910899. Epub 2012 Aug 30.

Neuroprotective effects of erucin against 6-hydroxydopamine-induced oxidative damage in a dopaminergic-like neuroblastoma cell line.

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Department of Pharmacology, Alma Mater Studiorum-University of Bologna, via Irnerio 48, 40126 Bologna, Italy; E-Mails: (F.M.); (C.B.); (G.S.); (P.H.); (A.D.); (G.C.-F.).


Oxidative stress (OS) contributes to the cascade leading to the dysfunction or death of dopaminergic neurons during Parkinson's disease (PD). A strategy to prevent the OS of dopaminergic neurons may be the use of phytochemicals as inducers of endogenous antioxidants and phase 2 enzymes. In this study, we demonstrated that treatment of the dopaminergic-like neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cell line with isothiocyanate erucin (ER), a compound of cruciferous vegetables, resulted in significant increases of both total glutathione (GSH) levels and total antioxidant capacity at the cytosolic level. The increase of GSH levels was associated with an increase in the resistance of SH-SY5Y cells to neuronal death, in terms of apoptosis, induced by 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA). The pretreatment of SH-SY5Y cells with ER was also shown to prevent the redox status impairment, in terms of intracellular ROS and O(2) (•-) formation, and loss of mitochondrial membrane potential, early events that are initiators of the apoptotic process, induced by 6-OHDA. Last, the antiapoptotic and antioxidant effects of ER were abolished by buthionine sulfoximine, supporting the main role of GSH in the neuroprotective effects recorded by ER. These results suggest that ER may prevent the oxidative damage induced by 6-OHDA.


6-hydroxydopamine; Parkinson’s disease; antioxidant activity; dopaminergic cells; erucin; glutathione; neuronal death; neuroprotection; oxidative stress

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