Neuroprotective effects of onion extract and quercetin against ischemic neuronal damage in the gerbil hippocampus.
J Med Food. 2009 Oct;12(5):990-5. PMID: 19857061
Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, College of Veterinary Medicine and BK21 Program for Veterinary Science, Seoul National University, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
Onion has several well-known biological functionalities, including antioxidant effects, and contains quercetin (3,3',4,5,7-pentahydroxyflavone), a powerful antioxidant. In the present study, we observed neuroprotective effects of onion extract (OE) and its major component, quercetin, on ischemic damage in the gerbil hippocampus, which is related to memory function. Repeated treatment with 100 mg/kg OE and 20 mg/kg quercetin for 15 days before ischemic surgery protected pyramidal neurons of the hippocampal CA1 region from ischemic damage. In the OE-treated ischemic group, gliosis (activation of astrocytes and microglia) was attenuated in the CA1 4 days after ischemia/reperfusion. In addition, treatment with OE and quercetin decreased protein levels of 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal (a marker for lipid peroxidation) in the ischemic CA1. We suggest that repeated administration of OE and quercetin can protect against neuronal damage from transient cerebral ischemia.