Antioxidant properties of Taraxacum officinale fruit extract are involved in the protective effect against cellular death induced by sodium nitroprusside in brain of rats

Dirleise Colle, Letícia Priscilla Arantes, Ricardo Rauber, Sérgio Edgar Campos de Mattos, João Batista Teixeira da Rocha, Cristina Wayne Nogueira, Félix Alexandre Antunes Soares
Pharmaceutical Biology 2012, 50 (7): 883-91

CONTEXT: Taraxacum officinale Weber (Asteraceae), known as dandelion, is used for medicinal purposes due to its choleretic, diuretic, antitumor, antioxidant, antiinflammatory, and hepatoprotective properties.

OBJECTIVE: We sought to investigate the protective activity of T. officinale fruit extract against sodium nitroprusside (SNP)-induced decreased cellular viability and increased lipid peroxidation in the cortex, hippocampus, and striatum of rats in vitro. To explain the mechanism of the extract's antioxidant activity, its putative scavenger activities against NO, DPPH·, OH·, and H(2)O(2) were determined.

METHODS: Slices of cortex, hippocampus, and striatum were treated with 50 μM SNP and T. officinale fruit ethanolic extract (1-20 µg/mL) to determine cellular viability by MTT reduction assay. Lipid peroxidation was measure in cortical, hippocampal and striatal slices incubates with SNP (5 µM) and T. officinale fruit extract (1-20 µg/mL). We also determined the scavenger activities of T. officinale fruit extract against NO·, DPPH·, OH·, and H(2)O(2), as well as its iron chelating capacity.

RESULTS: The extract (1, 5, 10, and 20 μg/mL) protected against SNP-induced decreases in cellular viability and increases in lipid peroxidation in the cortex, hippocampus, and striatum of rats. The extract had scavenger activity against DPPH· and NO· at low concentrations and was able to protect against H(2)O(2) and Fe(2+)-induced deoxyribose oxidation.

CONCLUSION: T. officinale fruit extract has antioxidant activity and protects brain slices against SNP-induced cellular death. Possible mechanisms of action include its scavenger activities against reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS), which are attributed to the presence of phenolic compounds in the extract.

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