Curcumin protects against the oxidative damage induced by the pesticide parathion in the hippocampus of the rat brain.
Nutr Neurosci. 2012 Feb 2. Epub 2012 Feb 2. PMID: 22333997
One of the main concerns regarding organophosphate pesticides (OP) is their possible toxic effects. Doses that do not produce acute toxicity are capable of altering the structure and biochemistry of different tissues and organs by production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). Curcumin (CUR) is the main substance in Curcuma longa (Zingiberacea) rhizome that has strong antioxidant activity. However, the neuroprotective properties of curcumin against oxidative stress induced by prolonged exposure to parathion (PAR) is not clear. OBJECTIVE: The present work evaluated the protective effect of curcumin against the oxidative damage induced in the rat hippocampus by the OP PAR. METHODS: Forty female Wistar rats were distributed in four groups as follows: exposed to PAR by inhalation (PAR group); pre-treated with CUR and then exposed to PAR by inhalation, (CUR + PAR group); exposed to environmental air and treated with CUR in the food (CUR group); and exposed to environmental air (the control group). At the end of the handling process, the concentration of erythrocyte cholinesterase was monitored, as indicator of PAR intoxication and lipoperoxidation,immunohistochemistry for astrocytes, and activated microglia and apoptosis was determined in the hippocampus. RESULTS: In the present study, we show that the administration of CUR (200 mg/kg body weight) significantly diminished the oxidative damage in the hippocampus of rats exposed to the OP PAR.DISCUSSION: These data suggest that CUR may be an alternative to prevent neurodegenerative damage after pesticide exposure.