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Aloperine Alleviates Myocardial Injury Induced by Myocardial Ischemia and Reperfusion by Activating the ERK1/2/β-catenin Signaling Pathway.

OBJECTIVE: Myocardial ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury can cause severe cardiac damage. Aloperine is a quinolizidine alkaloid found in the leaves and seeds of Sophora alopecuroides L. It has been recognized that aloperine has organ-protective properties; however, its role in cardioprotection is poorly characterized. This study aimed to evaluate the cardioprotective effects of aloperine against myocardial I/R injury in vivo.

METHODS: Adult male Sprague‒Dawley rats were randomly divided into sham-operated, control, and aloperine groups. All rats except for the sham-operated rats were subjected to 45 min of myocardial ischemia (by left anterior descending ligation) followed by 3 h of reperfusion. Aloperine (10 mg/kg) was given intravenously at the onset of reperfusion. The cardioprotective effects of aloperine were evaluated by determining infarct size, hemodynamics, histological changes, cardiac biomarkers, and cardiac apoptosis.

RESULTS: Aloperine limited infarct size; improved hemodynamics; attenuated myocardial I/R-induced histological deterioration; decreased serum LDH, CK-MB, and α-HBDH levels; and inhibited apoptosis after myocardial I/R injury. Moreover, aloperine stimulated the phosphorylation of ventricular ERK1/2, which is a major module of MAPK signaling pathways. Furthermore, aloperine increased the ventricular expression levels of β-catenin. Pharmacological inhibition of ERK1/2 diminished aloperine-induced cardioprotection and blocked ERK1/2/β-catenin signaling.

CONCLUSIONS: These data support the cardioprotective effect of aloperine against myocardial I/R injury, which is mediated, at least in part, by the ERK1/2/β-catenin signaling pathway.

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