Puerarin is neuroprotective against amyloid beta toxicity. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Puerarin suppression of Aβ1-42-induced primary cortical neuron death is largely dependent on ERβ.
Brain Res. 2017 Feb 15 ;1657:87-94. Epub 2016 Dec 5. PMID: 27923632
Recent study has suggested that estrogen replacement therapy (ERT) can decrease the risk of the development of Alzheimer's disease (AD), and phytoestrogen has been proposed as a potential alternative to ERT. In this study, we investigated the protective function of puerarin (a phytoestrogen isolated from puerarin lobate) against amyloid beta (Aβ1-42)-induced toxicity in cortical neurons and established the connection between such a protection and estrogen receptor (ER) activation. Puerarin suppressed Aβ1-42-induced cortical neuron death in a concentration-dependent manner. Morphological examination showed that puerarin not only suppressed Aβ1-42-induced decrease in neuron numbers, but also promoted neurite growth. In addition, we found that the neuroprotection of puerarin was dependent on the activation of estrogen receptors (ERs), as demonstrated by activation of ERE-reporter gene. Puerarin preferentially up-regulated the expression of ERβ but not ERα, and ERβ-specific siRNA significantly reduced the neuroprotection of puerarin. Taken together, our results indicated that puerarin is neuroprotective against Aβ1-42 toxicity via the activation of estrogen receptors, and ERβ plays a key role in the process. Our novel findings provide a potential strategy for the prevention of neurodegeneration and the treatment of AD.