Author(s): Kawahara M, Sadakane Y, Koyama H, Konoha K, Ohkawara S
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Abstract Although zinc (Zn) is an essential trace element, excess Zn causes neuronal death following transient global ischemia and plays a central role in the pathogenesis of vascular-type dementia. In this study, we developed a rapid and convenient screening system for substances that prevent Zn-induced neurotoxicity by using GT1-7 cells (immortalized hypothalamic neurons), with the aim of identifying a treatment for vascular-type dementia. Among tested, we found a protective substance in the extract of round herring (Etrumeus teres), and determined its structure as l-histidine. Analysis of the structure-activity relationship by using histidine analogues revealed that both l-histidine and d-histidine exhibit the same neuroprotective activity. Furthermore, we investigated the molecular mechanisms underlying the protective effect of histidine on Zn-induced neurotoxicity using Zn imaging and gene expression analysis, and found that histidine protects against Zn-induced neurotoxicity not by inhibiting Zn chelation, thereby preventing increases in intracellular Zn(2+). Moreover, it is also suggested that endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and activity-regulated cytoskeleton associated protein (Arc) are implicated in Zn-induced degeneration of neurons.
This article was published in Metallomics
and referenced in Journal of Antivirals & Antiretrovirals