Shahram Ejtemaei Mehr

Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Teheran, Tehrān, Iran

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Publications (11)21.43 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Methamphetamine (METH) is a highly addictive and neurotoxic psychostimulant. Its use in humans is often associated with neurocognitive impairment and deficits in hippocampal plasticity. Striatal dopamine system is one of the main targets of METH. The dopamine neurons in the striatum directly or indirectly regulate the GABA and glutamatergic signaling in this region and thus their outputs. This is consistent with previous reports showing modification of neuronal activity in the striatum modulates the expression of hippocampal LTP and hippocampal-dependent memory tasks such as Morris water maze (MWM). Therefore, reversing or preventing METH-induced synaptic modifications via pharmacological manipulations of the shell-nucleus accumbens (shell-NAc) may introduce a viable therapeutic target to attenuate the METH-induced memory deficits. This study is designed to investigate the role of intra-shell NAc manipulation of GABAA and NMDA receptors and their interaction with METH on memory performance in MWM task. Pharmacological manipulations were performed in rats received METH or saline. We found systemic saline plus intra-shell NAc infusions of muscimol dose-dependently impaired performance, while bicuculline had no effect. Surprisingly, the intra-NAc infusions of 0.005μg/rat muscimol that has no effect on memory performance (ineffective dose) prevented METH-induced memory impairment. In the contrary, the intra-NAc infusions of bicuculline (0.2μg/rat) increased METH-induced memory impairment. However, pre-training intra-NAc infusions of D-AP5 dose-dependently impaired performance, while NMDA had no effect in rats received systemic saline (control group). The intra-NAc infusions with an ineffective dose of NMDA (0.1μg/rat) increased METH-induced memory impairment. Furthermore, intra-NAc infusions of D-AP5 with an ineffective dose (0.1μg/rat) prevented METH-induced memory impairment. Our result is consistent with the interpretation that METH-mediated learning deficit might be due to modification of hippocampus-VTA loop and that augmentation of GABAA receptor function in the shell-NAc may provide a new therapeutic target for alleviating METH-induced memory deficits.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2015 · Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior
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    ABSTRACT: The beneficial effects of curcumin which includes its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and cancer chemo-preventive properties have been identified. Little information is available regarding the optimal dose and treatment periods of curcumin on the proliferation rate of different sources of stem cells. In this study, the effect of various concentrations of curcumin on the survival and proliferation of two types of outstanding stem cells which includes bone marrow stem cells (BMSCs) and adult rat neural stem/progenitor cells (NS/PCs) at different time points was investigated. BMSCs were isolated from bilateral femora and tibias of adult Wistar rats. NS/PCs were obtained from subventricular zone of adult Wistar rat brain. The curcumin (0.1, 0.5, 1, 5 and 10 μM/L) was added into a culture medium for 48 or 72 h. Fluorescent density of 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine (Brdu)-positive cells was considered as proliferation index. In addition, cell viability was assessed by MTT assay. Treatment of BMSCs with curcumin after 48 h, increased cell survival and proliferation in a dose-dependent manner. However, it had no effect on NSCs proliferation except a toxic effect in the concentration of 10 μM of curcumin. After a 72 h treatment period, BMSCs and NS/PCs survived and proliferated with low doses of curcumin. However, high doses of curcumin administered for 72 h showed toxic effects on both stem cells. These findings suggest that curcumin survival and proliferative effects depend on its concentration, treatment period and the type of stem cells. Appropriate application of these results may be helpful in the outcome of combination therapy of stem cells and curcumin.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2015 · DARU Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences
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    ABSTRACT: Considering the existence of cross-tolerance between clonidine and morphine besides the same interaction between morphine and WIN 55,212-2 persuaded us to verify this fact between WIN 55,212-2 and clonidine in guinea pig ileum, which is a well-known model to examine the mode of action of cannabinoids and α2-adenoceptor agonistsThe rectangular pulses were passed to the 0.5 g stretched ileum segments that were fixed in 20-ml organ bath. PowerLab system and Graphpad Prism were applied to record twitches and analyse the data. Electrically evoked contractions were dose-dependently inhibited by WIN 55,212-2 and clonidine (pD2= 8.56 ± 0.41 and 7.65 ± 0.15, respectively).Tolerance to this effect could be induced by 4-h incubation with WIN 55,212-2 (3 × IC50) (pD2 = 6.36 ± 0.26, degree of tolerance: 159.32) (P < 0.01) but not with clonidine (2 × IC50 and 4 × IC50) for different time courses. Dose–response curve for inhibitory action of WIN 55,212-2 was shifted to the right after 4-h incubation with clonidine (3 × 10−10m) comparing to the untreated tissues (pD2 = 5.26 ± 0.69, degree of tolerance: 2000) (P < 0.001). This observation provides the evidence for the cannabinoid-noradrenergic systems interaction in the enteric nervous system as a simplified representative for central nervous system.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · Autonomic & Autacoid Pharmacology
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    ABSTRACT: Stress is known to be an inhibitor of the reproductive hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis. However, the neural and molecular connections between stress and reproduction are not yet understood. It is well established that in both humans and rodents, kisspeptin (encoded by the kiss1 gene) is a strong stimulator of the HPG axis. In the present study we hypothesized that endocannabinoids, an important neuromodulatory system in the brain, can act on the HPG axis at the level of kiss1 expression to inhibit reproductive function under stress. Adult male Wistar rats were unilaterally implanted with an intracerebroventricular cannula. Afterwards, the animals were exposed to immobilization stress, with or without the presence of the cannabinoid CB1 receptor antagonist AM251 (1 µg/rat). Blood samples were collected through a retro-orbital plexus puncture before and after stress. Five hours after the stress, brain tissue was collected for reverse transcriptase-quantitative polymerase chain reaction measurements of kiss1 mRNA. Immobilization stress (1 hour) resulted in a decrease in the serum luteinizing hormone concentration. Additionally, kiss1 gene expression was decreased in key hypothalamic nuclei that regulate gonadotrophin secretion, the medial preoptic area (mPOA), and to some extent the arcuate nucleus (ARC). A single central administration of AM251 was effective in blocking these inhibitory responses. These findings suggest that endocannabinoids mediate, at least in part, immobilization stress-induced inhibition of the reproductive system. Our data suggest that the connection between immobilization stress and the HPG axis is kiss1 expression in the mPOA rather than the ARC.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2013 · Clinical and Experimental Reproductive Medicine
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    ABSTRACT: Objectives: To investigate the effect of morphine on the reduced uteroplacental perfusion pressure (RUPP) model of pre-eclampsia in rats. Study design: The abdominal aorta and ovarian arteries of pregnant rats were isolated and clipped on gestational day 14. The chronic morphine treatment group received naltrexone 5 mg/kg 1h before each dose of morphine. L-nitromonomethylarginine 2 mg/kg was administrated in the same pattern. The control group received saline 10 ml/kg. Systolic blood pressure, blood urea nitrogen (BUN), creatinine, creatinine clearance, urinary protein, urinary nitrite/nitrate excretion, and fetal and placental weights were determined. Results: Morphine significantly reduced systolic blood pressure, fetal and placental weights, plasma BUN, creatinine and urinary protein in RUPP rats compared with control rats. Urinary nitrite/nitrate excretion and creatinine clearance were significantly increased in response to morphine treatment. Conclusion: Morphine reduced blood pressure and improved renal function in the RUPP model of pre-eclampsia, but this was associated with reduced fetal and placental weights.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2013 · European journal of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive biology
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    ABSTRACT: Nicotine, the main pharmacologically active component in tobacco and cigarette, has some toxic effects and also high potential for addiction. In this study, the effect of artichoke (Cynara scolymus L.) and zeolite nano-materials on urinary excretion of nicotine and consequently elimination of systematically absorbed nicotine was investigated. A simple, valid and highly sensitive high performance liquid chromatography method has been developed for determination of nicotine in rat urine according to guidelines for bioanalysis.It was found that nano-zeolites can cause increase in urinary concentration of nicotine due to its high surface adsorption. Artichoke leaf extract can cause increase in urinary excretion of nicotine in longer post administration times. It was observed that co-administration of nanozeolites and the leaf extract has the synergetic effect on increasing the urinary excretion of nicotine.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2012 · Arzneimittel-Forschung
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    ABSTRACT: Nanoemulsions are increasingly being investigated for their fascinating capability of loading both hydrophobic and hydrophilic molecules while their stability is still an issue, being affected by various factors. In this study, to evaluate the dominant factors affecting the stability of nanoemulsions, artificial neural networks (ANNs) were implemented. Nanoemulsions of almond oil in water containing oleic acid-coated superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles were prepared using a mixture of Tween 80 and Span 80 as surfactant system and ethanol as a co-surfactant. The ratio of transparency of the samples at 30 min and 7 days after preparation was taken as an indication of the stability of samples. Four independent variables, namely, concentration of nanoparticle, surfactant, oil, and alcohol were investigated to find their relations with the dependent variable (i.e., transparency ratio). Using ANNs modeling, it was concluded that the stability is affected by all variables, with all variables showing reverse effect on the stability beyond an optimum amount.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2012 · AAPS PharmSciTech
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    ABSTRACT: Brain ischemia initiates several metabolic events leading to neuronal death. These events mediate large amount of damage that arises after some neurodegenerative disorders as well as transient brain ischemia. Melissa officinalis is considered as a helpful herbal plant in the prevention of various neurological diseases like Alzheimer that is related with oxidative stress. We examined the effect of Melissa officinalis on hypoxia induced neuronal death in a cortical neuronal culture system as in vitro model and transient hippocampal ischemia as in vivo model. Transient hippocampal ischemia was induced in male rats by tow vessel-occlusion for 20 min. After reperfusion, the histopathological changes and the levels inflammation, oxidative stress status, and caspase-3 activity in hippocampus were measured. Cytotoxicity assays showed a significant protection of a 10 μg/ml dose of Melissa against hypoxia in cultured neurons which was confirmed by a conventional staining (P<0.05). Melissa treatment decrease caspase3 activity (P<0.05) and TUNEL-positive cells significantly (P<0.01). Melissa oil has also inhibited malon dialdehyde level and attenuated decrease of Antioxidant Capacity in the hippocampus. Pro-inflammatory cytokines TNF-α, IL-1β and HIF-1α mRNA levels were highly increased after ischemia and treatment with Melissa significantly suppressed HIF-1α gene expression (P<0.05). Results showed that Melissa officinalis could be considered as a protective agent in various neurological diseases associated with ischemic brain injury.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2012 · DARU-JOURNAL OF FACULTY OF PHARMACY
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    ABSTRACT: Vincristine (VCR) as a frequently used antimitotic agent which is commonly prescribed for wide spectrum of neoplasm, causes mixed sensorimotor neuropathy. Several evidences show lithium could be a neuroprotective agent, therefore to assess whether a pretreatment and at subtherapeutic dose it could prevent the peripheral neuropathy produced by VCR, rats were treated with VCR 0.1mg/kg i.p. for 3 alternative doses and / or lithium chloride (20mg/kg or 40 mg/kg i.p. daily from the first day to the day of sacrifice). Erythrocyte lithium concentration (ELC) and plasma lithium concentration (PLC) were measured at the seventh day of study and the day of scarification. After seventh day of lithium administration, PLC and ELC reached to a steady state at subtheraputic dose and they did not significantly change at normal housing situation. Hot plate, open field test and nerve conduction velocity were used to evaluate the sensory and motor neuropathy. Only VCR treated rats showed behavioral, electrophysiological and histological evidences of a mixed sensorimotor neuropathy by significant increase in hot plate latencies and a marked decrease in total distance moved and conduction velocities in both sensory and motor nerves. Lithium at the dose of 20mg/kg and specially 40mg/kg robustly reduced the rate of mortality, general toxicity and was able to ameliorate mixed sensorimotor neuropathy induced by VCR. These results suggest that lithium at dose of 20mg/kg and 40 mg/kg, potentially by its effects on cell survival pathways such as inhibition of glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK3β), can prevent both motor and sensory components of VCR neuropathy.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2012 · Acta medica Iranica
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    ABSTRACT: Integration is an important educational strategy in medical education. Considering this idea, the goal of the present study was to design and implementation of longitudinal and vertical integrated education of anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, neurology and neuropsychiatry subjects of brain's basal ganglia by a multidisciplinary team. Kern's approach to curriculum development was used. Participants were 20 medical students at basic science level who contribute in a 10 stations of pre-test exam at Medical School's Skill Lab. After the implementation of the module by a multidisciplinary team, post-test were done. A structured questionnaire was designed to assess student opinions about adequacy, usefulness of the module using a Likert scale with 5 categories ranging from "completely agreement" to "completely disagreement". The result of pre and post-test were also compared. Twenty questionnaires were completed, giving a 77.63% satisfaction rate. Seventy-five percent of students found it useful and appropriate at basic science level. About fifty percent of students suggested the implementation of this module for other medical students. The score of post-test was significantly (14.52 ± 0.47 vs 6.32 ± 0.62, P < 0.05) higher than pre-test results. The viewpoints of medical students were positive and they value the module highly. Since it is not easy to change the style we teach, these results suggest necessitate of supporting the faculty member's participation in these modules.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2011 · Acta medica Iranica

  • No preview · Article · Mar 2011 · Journal of Hepatology