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Publications (4)7.23 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: β-asarone, a major component of Acorus tatarinowii Schott, has positive effects in neurodegeneration disease, however, its effect on the Parkinson's disease (PD) remains unclear. In this study, the effects of β-asarone on behavioral tests, neurotransmitters, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH), and α-synuclein (α-syn) were investigated in 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) induced rats. Furthermore, the JNK/Bcl-2/Beclin-1 autophagy pathway was also studied. The results showed that β-asarone improved the behavioral symptoms of rats in the open field, rotarod test, initiation time, and stepping time. And it increased the HVA, Dopacl, and 5-HIAA levels in striatum but not the DA and 5-HT levels. After administration of β-asarone, the TH level was elevated but the α-syn was declined in rats. It inhibited the expressions of LC3-II, but increased the p62 expression in SN4741 cells. Moreover, it affected the expressions of Beclin-1, Bcl-2, JNK, and p-JNK in vivo. We deduced that β-asarone may firstly downregulate expressions of JNK and p-JNK, and then indirectly increase the expression of Bcl-2. And the function of Beclin-1 could be inhibited, which could inhibit autophagy activation. Collectively, all data indicated that β-asarone may be explored as a potential therapeutic agent in PD therapy.
    Molecular neurobiology. 11/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Beclin 1, a regulator of the autophagy pathway, plays an important role in Parkinson's disease (PD). However, the crucial mechanism of Beclin 1 in PD remains unclear. Therefore, we investigated dynamic expressions of Beclin 1 and tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) in different brain areas of 6-OHDA-induced rats. Beclin 1 and TH expressions were analyzed by flow cytometry and immunohistochemistry, respectively. The results showed that Beclin 1 expressions were low in the sham group, but rose significantly after 6-OHDA injection. In the striatum and cortex, Beclin 1 increased at 3 h, peaking at 12 h, while in the hippocampus, it increased at 3 h and peaked at 24 h, then it declined slowly and remained steady at 72 h. Beclin 1 expression in the striatum and cortex areas was higher than that of the hippocampus area at 12 h. In addition, the time-course of TH expression in the striatum was similar to that in the mesencephalon. TH expression declined dramatically between 0 and 12 h. Pearson analysis showed significant negative correlations between TH and Beclin 1 expression in the areas we analyzed. While TH expression declined gradually between 12 and 72 h, significant positive correlations between TH and Beclin 1 were detected during that interval. This indicated that activation of Beclin 1-dependent autophagy may inhibit the loss of TH-positive neurons.
    Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology 07/2013; · 2.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To explore the effects of β-asarone from Acorus Tatarinowii Schott on autophagy in an ischemic stroke model of PC12 cells. The ischemic stroke model of PC12 cells was made by OGD/R (2 h oxygen-glucose deprivation followed by 24 h reperfusion). Drug administration was started 1 h before OGD and last for 3 h. Then the cells were incubated in the drug-free and full culture medium under normoxic conditions for 24 h. After the treatments, Beclin-1, intracellular free calcium concentration ([Ca(2+)](i)) and mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP) were analyzed using flow cytometry. Cell viability was measured using MTT assay. Cell morphology was studied under inverted phase contrast microscope, and autophagosomes were observed under transmission electron microscope. Pretreatment with β-asarone (20, 30, or 45 μg/mL) or the calcium channel antagonist nimodipine (10 μmol/L) significantly increased the cell viability and MMP, and decreased Beclin-1 expression and [Ca(2+)](i) in OGD/R-treated PC12 cells. Under inverted phase contrast microscope, pretreatment with β-asarone or nimodipine dramatically increase the number of cells and improved the cellular morphology. Autophagosomes were found in OGD/R-treated PC12 cells as well as in drug plus OGD/R-treated PC12 cells. β-Asarone protects PC12 cells against OGD/R-induced injury partly due to attenuating Beclin-1-dependent autophagy caused by decreasing [Ca(2+)](i) and increasing MMP.
    Acta Pharmacologica Sinica 04/2012; 33(6):737-42. · 2.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Beta-asarone has significant pharmacological effects on the central nervous system. It can attenuate neuronal apoptosis, but its effects on the brain ischemia-reperfusion-induced autophagy have not been reported yet. Our study was a two-stage procedure: evaluation of β-asarone effects on the autophagy at first, and then analysis of the possible mechanism. The middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) model was adopted to make the brain injure and Beclin 1 was used to evaluate the autophagy. We hypothesized that the mechanism might be related to c-Jun N-terminal kinases (JNK), phospho-JNK (p-JNK), Bcl-2 and Beclin 1. To test this hypothesis, we evaluated JNK, p-JNK, Bcl-2 and Beclin 1 levels with flow cytometry. Additionally, we divided the brain into three regions: ischemic region, ischemic penumbra, and normal region, and analyzed them respectively. We found, compared to both groups II (model control) and III (low dose), Beclin 1 levels in groups IV (medium dose) and V (high dose) were significantly decreased. Beclin 1, JNK and p-JNK levels in groups VII (β-asarone) and VIII (JNK inhibitor) were significantly decreased, but Bcl-2 levels were significantly increased. Additionally, Beclin 1, JNK, p-JNK and Bcl-2 levels among the three regions had no significant differences. We conclude that β-asarone can attenuate the autophagy in a dose-dependent manner. The mechanism is likely that β-asarone can decrease JNK and p-JNK levels at first, and then increase Bcl-2 level, finally interfere with the functions of Beclin 1 during the execution of autophagy. Additionally, β-asarone can attenuate autophagy in a widespread manner.
    European journal of pharmacology 04/2012; 680(1-3):34-40. · 2.59 Impact Factor