Archives of pharmacal research

Protective roles of N-benzylcinnamide on cortex and hippocampus of aged rat brains.

PMID 25840686


Brain aging has been associated with oxidative stress leading to inflammation and apoptosis. The protective effects and underlying mechanisms of N-benzylcinnamide (PT-3), purified from Piper submultinerve, on brains of 90-week-old Wistar rats were investigated following daily intraperitoneal injection with 1.5 mg of PT-3/kg of body weight for 15 days. PT-3 treatment improved spatial learning and memory of aged rats and caused significant changes in brain frontal cortex, hippocampus, and temporal cortex in parameters associated with oxidative stress (decreased reactive oxygen species production and iNOS and nNOS levels), inflammation (reduced levels of IL-1β and IL-6), apoptosis (reduced levels of Bax and activated caspase-3, and elevated level of Bcl-2), and signaling pathways related to inflammation and apoptosis (decreased amounts of phospho-JNK and -p38, increased phospho-Akt level and no change in phospho-ERK1/2 content) compared to controls. PT-3 treatment also inhibited aged rat brain AChE activity. These results suggest that PT-3 with its intrinsic antioxidant and AChE inhibitory properties has therapeutic potential in ameliorating, in part, age-associated damages to the brain.