Berberine protects against memory impairment and anxiogenic-like behavior in rats submitted to sporadic Alzheimer's-like dementia: Involvement of acetylcholinesterase and cell death.Neurotoxicology. 2016 12; 57:241-250.N
The present study aimed to investigate the effects of berberine (BRB) on spatial and learning memory, anxiety, acetylcholinesterase activity and cell death in an experimental model of intracerebroventricular streptozotocin (ICV-STZ) induced sporadic Alzheimer's-like dementia. Sixty male Wistar rats were randomly divided into six groups: control (CTR), BRB 50mg/kg (BRB 50), BRB 100mg/kg (BRB 100), streptozotocin (STZ), streptozotocin plus BRB 50mg/kg (STZ+BRB 50), and streptozotocin plus BRB 100mg/kg (STZ+BRB 100). Rats were injected with ICV-STZ (3mg/kg) or saline, and daily oral BRB treatment began on day 4 for a period of 21days. Behavioral tests were carried out on day 17, and rats were euthanized on day 24. Cell death analysis and determination of acetylcholinesterase activity was performed on the cerebral cortex and hippocampus of the brain. Administration of BRB prevented the memory loss, anxiogenic behavior, increased acetylcholinesterase activity and cell death induced by ICV-STZ. This may be explained, in part, by a protective effect of BRB on ameliorating the progression of neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease, and the results of this study provide a better understanding of the effect of BRB on the brain. Thus, BRB may act as a potential neuroprotective agent.