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Jul 09, 2017
Cellular And Molecular Neurobiology
Neurodegenerative diseases are defined by progressive loss of specific neuronal cell populations and are associated with protein aggregates. Oxidative stress has been implicated in their pathological processes. Previous studies revealed that docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is beneficial in neurodegenerative diseases. Phospholipids (PLs) derived from marine products are rich in DHA and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). In the present study, we investigated the neuroprotective effects of DHA-enriched and unenriched phosphatidylcholine (PC) and phosphatidylserine (PS) on oxidative stress induced by hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and tert-butylhydroperoxide in PC12 cells. Cell viability and leakage of lactate dehydrogenase results showed that the neuroprotective effect of PS was superior to that of PC. DHA- and EPA-enriched PC and PS were superior to that without DHA or EPA; in addition, the improvement with n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid-enriched PS (n-3 PS) was dose dependent. Acridine orange/ethidium bromide staining showed that DHA- and EPA-enriched PS (DHA/EPA-PS) could significantly inhibit apoptosis. Mechanistic studies revealed that EPA-PS and DHA-PS were effective to increase superoxide dismutase (SOD) levels by 48.4 and 58.2 % and total antioxidant capacity (T-AOC) level by 51 and 94 %, respectively, in the H2O2 model. Similar results for SOD and T-AOC levels were shown in the t-BHP model. EPA/DHA-PS could downregulate the messenger RNA level of Caspase-3, Caspase-9, and Bax, upregulate Bcl-2, inhibit Bax, and increase Bcl-2 at protein level. In conclusion, EPA/DHA-PS could protect PC12 cells from oxidative stress and prevent mitochondrial-mediated apoptosis. Our findings indicate that the neuroprotective effects of DHA/EPA-PLs depend on the molecular form. Further studies are necessary to reveal detailed mechanisms and structure-effect relationships.

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