Neuroprotective effect of a standardized extract of Centella asiatica ECa233 in rotenone-induced parkinsonism rats.
Phytomedicine. 2018 May 15 ;44:65-73. Epub 2018 Apr 16. PMID: 29895494
BACKGROUND: Mitochondrial dysfunction and reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation cause dopaminergic neurodegeneration in Parkinson's disease. The neuroprotective approach is a promising strategy to slow disease progression in Parkinson's disease. A standardized extract of Centella asiatica ECa233 has been previously reported to have pharmacological effects in the central nervous system.
PURPOSE: This study aimed to determine the neuroprotective effect and mechanisms of ECa233 in rotenone-induced parkinsonism rats.
METHODS: Rats were orally given either vehicle or ECa233 (10, 30 and 100 mg/kg) for 20 consecutive days. Rotenone (2.5 mg/kg i.p.) was given to parkinsonism (PD) and ECa-treated rats from day 15 to 20. Locomotor activity was recorded on day 1, 14, 17 and 20. Tyrosine-hydroxylase (TH) immunohistological staining was used to determine dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra and striatum. Furthermore, mitochondrial complex I activity, malondialdehyde (MDA) levels, superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase protein expression were measured in brain tissue.
RESULTS: Rats receiving ECa233 30 mg/kg showed a significant increase in distances (p < 0.01) together with a higher number and intensity of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra and striatum (p < 0.001) compared to PD rats. ECa233 (30 mg/kg) protected against mitochondrial complex I inhibition, decreased MDA levels (p < 0.05) and increased SOD (p < 0.01) and catalase (p < 0.05) expression.
CONCLUSION: ECa233 can protect against rotenone-induced motor deficits and dopaminergic neuronal death. These effects are mediated through the protection of mitochondrial complex I activity, the effects of antioxidants and the enhancement of antioxidant enzyme expression.