Epilepsy is associated with increased morbidity and mortality together and places a large financial burden on individuals and society. To evaluate the anticonvulsant action of protodioscin (PDSN) in experiments with animals with pilocarpine-induced convulsions. We assessed the activity of PDSN in pilocarpine induced seizures in combination with different agents which are acting via diverse receptors, such as atropine, memantine, nimodipine, diazepam, and flumazenil, to determine the exact receptors responsible for the action of PDSN. Furthermore, the level of antioxidant markers was investigated in the cerebellum and cerebral cortex in mice to define the antioxidant action of PDSN. The effects of PDSN on proapoptotic markers (i.e., Bcl-2, Bax, and caspase-3) was investigated via western blot analysis. PDSN significantly enhanced latency to the first convulsion and survival compared to the group treated with pilocarpine alone. Moreover, PDSN improved animal survival, and subjects experiencing no convulsions. Striatal glutamate and aspartate levels were not modified, and gamma amino butyric acid (GABA) levels increased, as a result of treatment with PDSN. The results suggest that the anticonvulsive action of PDSN is dependent on inhibitory amino acids. PDSN treatment also significantly decreased nitrite levels in the blood and brain cortex compared to the normal control. In the western blot analysis, PDSN exerted its neuroprotective effect via the upregulation of Bcl-2 and downregulation of Bax and caspase-3. The results of this study suggest that PDSN exerts neuroprotective effects via multiple mechanisms.Graphical abstract
Effect of PDSN on the expression of Bax, Bcl-2, and Caspase-3 at 24 h after pilocarpine-induced seizures in hippocampus.