Genipin is active via modulating monoaminergic transmission and levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in rat model of depression.
Neuroscience. 2014 Sep 5 ;275:365-73. Epub 2014 Jun 24. PMID: 24972301
Genipin, an important bioactive component from Gardenia jasminoides Eills, was demonstrated to possess antidepressant-like effects in a previous study. However, the molecular mechanism of antidepressant-like effects on genipin was not clear. The present study aimed to investigate the possible mechanism of antidepressant-like effects on genipin with a chronic unpredictable mild stress (CUMS)-induced depression model in rats. In CUMS-induced depressive rats, bodyweight and 1% sucrose consumption decreased significantly compared with the normal control group. Furthermore, these changes could be significantly reversed by genipin application. The levels of 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT), norepinephrine (NE) in the hippocampus decreased and the level of 5-hydroxyindole acetic acid (5-HIAA) increased in the CUMS-induced depressive rats. However, pre-treatments with genipin significantly increased the levels of 5-HT, NE and decreased the level of 5-HIAA in the hippocampus. The concentration of cAMP in the hippocampus was increased by genipin compared to the CUMS-exposed model group. The mRNA expressions of 5-hydroxytryptamine 1A receptor (5-HT1AR), cAMP response element binding protein (CREB) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in rats were decreased exposed to CUMS, which were reversed by genipin-treated rats exposed to CUMS. Compared to the CUMS-exposed model group, the mRNA expression of 5-hydroxytryptamine 2A receptor (5-HT(2A)R) was decreased significantly by genipin-treated rats. The mRNA and protein expression of CREB, BDNF were increased in genipin-treated rats compared to the CUMS-exposed model group. Moreover, the levels of corticosterone in serum were decreased by genipin-treated compared to the CUMS-exposed model group. These results suggest that the possible mechanism of antidepressant-like effects on genipin, at least in one part, resulted from monoaminergic neurotransmitter system and the potential dysfunctional regulation of the post-receptor signaling pathway, which particularly affected the 5-HT(1A)R, 5-HT(2A)R and BDNF levels in the hippocampus.