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Int J Immunopathol Pharmacol. 2013 Jul-Sep;26(3):757-64.

Huperzine A inhibits CCL2 production in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis mice and in cultured astrocyte.

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Department of Integrative Medicine and Neurobiology, State Key Laboratory of Medical Neurobiology, Shanghai Medical College; Institute of Acupuncture Research (WHO Collaborating Center for Traditional Medicine), Institutes of Brain Science, Fudan Universi.


The active role of chemokines and inflammatory cytokines in the central nervous system (CNS) during the pathogenesis of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) has been clearly established. Recent studies from our laboratory reported that Huperzine A (HupA) can attenuate the disease process in EAE by the inhibition of inflammation, demyelination, and axonal injury in the spinal cord as well as encephalomyelitic T-cell proliferation. In this study, the effects of low dose HupA on CCL2, TNF-alpha, IL-6, and IL-1beta expression were evaluated in EAE. The effect of HupA on lipopolysachharide (LPS)-induced inflammatory molecule secretion was investigated in cultured-astrocytes in vitro. In MOG35-55-induced EAE mice, intraperitoneal injections of HupA (0.1 mg/kg•d−1) significantly suppressed the expression of CCL2, IL-6, TNF-alpha, and IL-1beta in the spinal cord. HupA also repressed LPS-induced CCL2 production, but with little influence on pro-inflammatory cytokines in primary cultured astrocytes. The inhibition effect of HupA on CCL2 is PPARgamma-dependent and nicotine receptor-independent. Conditioned culture media from HupA-treated astrocyte decreased PBMC migration in vitro. Collectively, these results suggest that HupA can ameliorate EAE by inhibiting CCL2 production in astrocyte, which may consequently decrease inflammatory cell infiltration in the spinal cord. HupA may have a potential therapeutic value for the treatment of MS and other neuroinflammatory diseases.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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