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Horm Behav. 2013 Jun;64(1):1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.yhbeh.2013.04.009. Epub 2013 May 4.

A novel melatonin agonist Neu-P11 facilitates memory performance and improves cognitive impairment in a rat model of Alzheimer' disease.

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Nursing School, University of South China, Hengyang, Hunan, China.


Previous studies have shown that melatonin is implicated in modulating learning and memory processing. Melatonin also exerts neuroprotective activities against Aβ-induced injury in vitro and in vivo. Neu-P11 (piromelatine, N-(2-(5-methoxy-1H-indol-3-yl)ethyl)-4-oxo-4H-pyran-2-carboxamide) is a novel melatonin (MT1/MT2) receptor agonist and a serotonin 5-HT1A/1D receptor agonist recently developed for the treatment of insomnia. In the present study we firstly investigated whether Neu-P11 and melatonin enhance memory performance in the novel object recognition (NOR) task in rats, and then assessed whether Neu-P11 and melatonin improve neuronal and cognitive impairment in a rat model of Alzheimer' disease (AD) induced by intrahippocampal Aβ(1-42) injection. The results showed that a single morning or afternoon administration of Neu-P11 enhanced object recognition memory measured at 4 or 24h after training. Melatonin was effective in the memory facilitating effects only when administered in the afternoon. Further results showed that intrahippocampal Aβ(1-42) injection resulted in hippocampal cellular loss, as well as decreased learning ability and memory in the Y maze and NOR tasks in rats. Neu-P11 but not melatonin attenuated cellular loss and cognitive impairment in the rat AD model. The current data suggest that Neu-P11 may serve as a novel agent for the treatment of AD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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