Screening seven Iranian medicinal plants for protective effects against β-Amyloid-induced cytotoxicity in cultured cerebellar granule neurons

Document Type : Original paper


1 Department of Toxicology, Faculty of Medical Sciences, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran.

2 Traditional Medicine and Materia Medica Research Center and Department of Traditional Pharmacy, School of Traditional Medicine, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.


Background and objectives: Alzheimer's disease (AD) as a neurodegenerative disorder is the most common form of dementia in the elderly. According to the amyloid hypothesis, accumulation of amyloid beta (Aβ) plaques, which are mostly constituted of Aβ peptide aggregates, triggers pathological cascades that lead to neuronal cell death. Thus, modulation of Aβ toxicity is the hopeful therapeutic approach for controlling the disease progression. Recently, several studies have indicated promising findings from herbal extracts against Aβ cytotoxicity. The aim of the present study was to assess the protective effect of the methanol extract of seven medicinal plants from Iran on Aβ-induced toxicity in primary neuron culture. Method: The methanol extracts of plants were prepared by maceration method. Primary cerebellar granule neurons (CGNs) were taken from male mice at postnatal days 6-7 and cultured in cell culture medium containing 10% FBS and 25 mM KCl. After seven days in vitro (DIV7), the cells were incubated with aggregated Aβ (10 μM) alone or in combination with different concentrations of extracts in the cultured medium for 24 h and cell viability was assessed by MTT assay. Results: Our results indicated that Sanguisorba minor, Cerasus microcarpa, Ferulago angulata, Amygdalus scoparia and Rosa canina extracts significantly ameliorated Aβ-induced toxicity which indicated the protective effect of these extracts. Protective effects were not observed for Stachys pilifera and Alhagi pseudalhagi extracts. Conclusion: Based on the protective effects of these plants against Aβ-induced toxicity, we recommend greater attention to their use in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease.


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