Molecular medicine reports

Propofol protects against the neurotoxicity of 1‑methyl‑4‑phenylpyridinium.

PMID 26572916


Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive and degenerative disorder of the central nervous system, characterized by the loss of dopaminergic neurons and muscular rigidity. Treatment with propofol (2,6‑diisopropylphenol) has been observed to attenuate oxidative stress injury via inhibition of programmed cell death. Results from the present study indicate that propofol treatment attenuates 1‑methyl‑4‑phenylpyridinium (MPP+)‑induced oxidative stress, which was demonstrated by increased levels of reactive oxygen species, 4‑hydroxy‑2‑nonenal and protein carbonyls. Furthermore, it was demonstrated that propofol may ameliorate MPP+‑induced mitochondrial dysfunction by increasing the level of ATP and the mitochondrial membrane potential. MTT and lactate dehydrogenase assays indicated that propofol treatment reduces cell vulnerability to MPP+‑induced insult. Propofol was also observed to prevent apoptotic signals by reducing the ratio of Bcl‑2‑associated X protein to B‑cell lymphoma 2, reducing the expression level of cleaved caspase‑3 and attenuating cytochrome c release. Thus, propofol may present as a novel therapeutic strategy for the treatment of PD.