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J Agric Food Chem. 2018 May 16;66(19):4948-4957. doi: 10.1021/acs.jafc.8b00988. Epub 2018 May 7.

Effects of Astaxanthin and Docosahexaenoic-Acid-Acylated Astaxanthin on Alzheimer's Disease in APP/PS1 Double-Transgenic Mice.

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College of Food Science and Engineering , Ocean University of China , Qingdao , Shandong 266003 , People's Republic of China.
Laboratory of Nutrition Biochemistry, Department of Applied Biochemistry and Food Science , Saga University , Saga 840-8502 , Japan.
Qingdao National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology , Laboratory of Marine Drugs and Biological Products , Qingdao , Shandong 266237 , People's Republic of China.


Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder with the characteristics of senile plaques, neuroinflammation, neurofibrillary tangles, and destruction of synapse structure stability. Previous studies have verified the protective effects of astaxanthin (AST). However, whether synthesized docosahexaenoic-acid-acylated AST diesters (AST-DHA) could delay AD pathogenesis remains unclear. In the present study, APP/PSEN1 (APP/PS1) double-transgenic mice were administrated with AST and AST-DHA for 2 months. The results of radial 8-arm maze and Morris water maze tests showed that AST-DHA exerted more significant effects than AST in enhancing learning and memory levels of APP/PS1 mice. Further mechanical studies suggested that AST-DHA was superior to AST in regulating the parameters of oxidative stress, reducing tau hyperphosphorylation, suppressing neuroinflammation, and regulating inflammasome expression and activation in APP/PS1 mice. The findings suggested that AST-DHA attenuated cognitive disorders by reducing pathological features in APP/PS1 mice, suggesting that AST-DHA might be a potential therapeutic agent for AD.


Alzheimer’s disease; DHA-acylated AST esters; astaxanthin; cognitive disorder; neuroinflammation

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