Coenzyme Q10 displays antidepressant-like activity with reduction of hippocampal oxidative/nitrosative DNA damage in chronically stressed rats

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Abstract

Multiple evidences suggest that depression is accompanied by an induction of oxidative/nitrosative stress (O&NS) pathways and by a reduced antioxidant status. Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is an essential cofactor in the mitochondrial electron transport pathway and has a powerful antioxidant capacity.

Methods

This study investigated the effect of chronic treatment with CoQ10 (25, 50, 100 and 150 mg/kg/day, i.p. for 3 weeks) on depressive-like behavior and hippocampal, O&NS, and DNA damage, induced by chronic restraint stress (CRS), an experimental model of depression, in rats.

Results

CoQ10 showed a significant antidepressant effect, as evidenced by amelioration of CRS-induced behavioral aberrations in forced swimming and open field tests, elevated corticosterone level and body weight loss. Moreover, CoQ10 dose-dependently restored the hippocampal catalase, glutathione peroxidase and reduced glutathione and decreased the hippocampal malondialdehyde, nitric oxide and 8-hydroxy-2′-deoxyguanosine levels, which indicated a potential protective effect of CoQ10 against hippocampal O&NS lipid peroxidation and DNA damage.

Conclusion

CoQ10 possesses antidepressant activity and can protect against CRS-induced hippocampal DNA damage which could be mediated in part by maintaining mitochondrial function and its well documented antioxidant properties. Therefore, CoQ10 may have a potential therapeutic value for the management of depressive disorders. However, further research, is still required to characterize the mechanism of the antidepressant effect of CoQ10 and extend these results before the safe application in humans.

Highlights

▸ Our Results solidify the suggested link between depression and oxidative stress. ▸ CoQ10 induces antidepressant-like activity in rats exposed to CRS. ▸ CoQ10 displays anxiolytic-like effect in rats exposed to CRS. ▸ CoQ10 prevents hippocampal Oxidative/Nitrosative DNA damage induced by CRS. ▸ Further research is needed to define the mechanism of CoQ10 behavioral effects.

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