Passiflora actiniahydroalcoholic extract and its major constituent, isovitexin, are neuroprotective against glutamate-induced cell damage in mice hippocampal slices

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Abstract

Objectives

To investigate whether Passiflora actinia hydroalcoholic extract and its major constituent, isovitexin, protect mice hippocampal brain slices from glutamate-induced neurotoxicity.

Methods

Neuroprotective effect of the extract against glutamate-induced excitotoxicity (10 mm) was evaluated through cell viability of hippocampal slices. The extract or its flavonoids were directly applied to hippocampal slices and then subjected to glutamate-induced toxicity. Alternatively, hippocampal slices from extract-treated mice were also subjected to the same toxicity protocol.

Key findings

Mice supplementation with the extract protected hippocampal slices from in-vitro neurotoxicity. When directly applied to hippocampal slices, the extract showed a higher neuroprotective potential than a commercial dry extract of Passiflora incarnata, which was related to P. actinia extract which had higher isovitexin and total flavonoid content expressed as isovitexin. Isovitexin, but not apigenin, induced a similar neuroprotective response when applied alone, at a concentration equivalent to that found in the extract.

Conclusions

This study highlights new neuropharmacological activity of the Passiflora genus, suggesting that it can act as modulator of the glutamatergic system. The search for improved pharmacotherapies with novel mechanisms of action has been shown of great importance for the treatment of resistant neurological and psychiatric disorders.

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