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   Table of Contents - Current issue
January-February 2022
Volume 17 | Issue 1
Page Nos. 1-110

Online since Thursday, November 11, 2021

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Chrysin ameliorates STZ-induced diabetes in rats: possible impact of modulation of TLR4/NF-κβ pathway Highly accessed article p. 1
Abeer Salama, Gihan F Asaad, Aya Shaheen
Background and purpose: Growing evidence advocates that upregulation of toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) has been suggested as a causative influence in the development and complications of diabetes mellitus. We aimed to study the antidiabetic activity of chrysin against streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetes via down-regulation of TLR4/nuclear factor (NF-κβ)/heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) pathway as well as modulation of clusters of differentiation 4 (CD4+) in rats. Experimental approach: Fifty rats were divided into five groups (n = 10). Group I, normal rats received a single intraperitoneal injection of buffer citrate; group II, STZ-induced diabetic rats; groups III-V, diabetic rats received glimepiride (0.5 mg/kg; p.o.) or chrysin (40 and 80 mg/kg; p.o.) respectively, for 10 days. Serum samples were extracted to determine nitric oxide (NO), malondialdehyde (MDA), and reduced glutathione (GSH), insulin, CD4+, TLR4, and NF-κβ. Pancreatic tissue samples were extracted to determine glucose transporter 2 (GLUT2). Part of the pancreas was kept in formalin for pathological studies. Findings/Results: An elevation in blood glucose, NO, and MDA serum levels and a reduction of pancreatic GLUT2 content, insulin, and GSH serum levels were observed in diabetic rats. STZ injection, also, showed an increase in serum TLR4, NF-κβ, and HSP70 levels and a reduction in serum CD4+ levels with pancreatic cells necrosis. These biochemical and histological changes were reversed in glimepiride and chrysin groups. Conclusion and implications: The present study proved that chrysin has a potent anti-diabetic effect through the elevation of insulin and GLUT2 levels, the reduction of oxidative stress, and the inflammatory pathways TLR4/NF-κβ/HSP70 with the regulation of CD4+.
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Oxypeucedanin and isoimperatorin extracted from Prangos ferulacea (L.) Lindl protect PC12 pheochromocytoma cells from oxidative stress and apoptosis induced by doxorubicin p. 12
Fereshteh Jalilian, Maryam Moieni-Arya, Leila Hosseinzadeh, Yalda Shokoohinia
Background and purpose: Doxorubicin (DOX) as a chemotherapeutic agent has been widely used in the treatment of various types of cancer. However, DOX exerts a toxic effect on normal tissues such as the brain. Furanocoumarins reduce the risk of cardiovascular and brain diseases because of their antioxidant activities. This study has been designed, for the first time, to evaluate the effect of known furanocoumarins oxypeucedanin and isoimperatorin extracted from Prangos ferulacea (L.) Lindl on oxidative stress and apoptosis induced by DOX toward pheochromocytoma cell line (PC12). Experimental approach: NMR and MASS spectrometers were used to characterize the isolated compounds. The protective effects of isolated compounds on DOX-induced cytotoxicity in PC12 cells were examined by MTT assay. PC12 cells were pretreated with oxypeucedanin and isoimperatorin for 2 and 21 h, respectively, subsequently exposure to DOX at IC50 concentration. Then, mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP), Bax and Bcl2 mRNA expressions, caspase-3 activation, and the generation of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) were measured after 24 h. Findings/Results: Pretreatment with oxypeucedanin and isoimperatorin significantly decreased DOX-induced apoptosis through reduction of caspase-3 activity and ROS generation and an increase in MMP. In addition, our finding showed pretreatment with these compounds leads to regulation of Bcl-2. Conclusion and implications: Taken together our observation indicated that oxypeucedanin and isoimperatorin have a protective effect against apoptosis induced by DOX in PC12 cells by inhibition of ROS production.
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Some novel hybrid quinazoline-based heterocycles as potent cytotoxic agents p. 22
Mahla Malekzadeh, Shadi Dadkhah, Ghadam Ali Khodarahmi, Parvin Asadi, Farshid Hassanzadeh, Mahboubeh Rostami
Background and purpose: In this study, some new cytotoxic hybrid structures were synthesized by combining pyrazolinone and imidazolinone rings with quinazoline pharmacophores. Experimental approach: The benzoxazinone, pyrazolo-quinazoline fused ring, and imidazolinone anchored quinazoline derivatives were synthesized by simple ring-opening, ring expansion, and ring closure strategies from oxazolones. The molecular docking studies of the final derivatives were accomplished on the epidermal growth factor receptor enzyme. The cytotoxic effect of the final compounds on the MCF-7 cell line was evaluated by MTT assay. Findings/Results: The docking results confirmed the optimized electrostatic, H-bonding, and hydrophobic interactions of structures with the key residues of the active site (ΔGbin < -9Kcal/mol). The derivatives have been obtained in good yield and purity, and their structures were confirmed by different methods (FT-IR, 1H-NMR, 13C-NMR, and CHNS analysis). The IC50s of all final derivatives against the MCF-7 cell line were lower than 10 μM, and between all, the IXa from pyrazolo-quinazolinone class (IC50: 6.43 μM) with chlorine substitute was the most potent. Furthermore, all derivatives showed negligible cytotoxicity on HUVEC normal cell line which would be a great achievement for a novel cytotoxic agent. Conclusion and implications: Based on the obtained results, pyrazolo[1,5-c] quinazolin-2-one series were more cytotoxic than imidazolinone methyl quinazoline-4(3H)-ones against MCF-7 cells. Chlorine substitute in the para position of the aromatic ring improved the cytotoxicity effect in both classes. It could be related to the polarizability of a chlorine atom and making better intermolecular interactions. Further pre-clinical evaluations are required for the promising synthesized cytotoxic compounds.
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Anti-inflammatory effect of pregabalin on acetic acid-induced colitis in the rats p. 35
Azadeh Motavallian, Ehsan Zamani, Saba Bouzari, Farzam Rezaeyan, Paridokht Karimian, Mehdi Evazalipour
Background and purpose: Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a chronic gastrointestinal disease characterized by the inflammation of the intestine. The available medicinal treatments for IBD are not efficacious enough since they exert various adverse effects. Therefore, the search for new therapeutic agents should be continued. The present study aimed to assess the anti-inflammatory effects of pregabalin on acetic acid-induced colitis in rats. Experimental approach: Using 2 mL of 3% acetic acid solution, colitis was intra-rectally induced in rats. Animals were randomly divided into 6 groups including the normal group, colitis control group, pregabalin treatment groups (30, 50, and 100 mg/kg; i.p., respectively), and dexamethasone treatment group (1 mg/kg; i.p.). Macroscopic, microscopic, and biochemical (myeloperoxidase, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, interleukin-6, and interleukin-1 beta) examinations were used to evaluate the efficacy of pregabalin in the inflamed colon. Findings/Results: All the applied doses of pregabalin significantly decreased the severity of macroscopic and microscopic colonic damages including ulcer severity, ulcer area, percentage of necrosis, and total colitis index compared to the colitis control group. These results were confirmed by the reduced colonic concentration of tumor necrosis factor-alpha, interleukin-6, interleukin-1 beta, and myeloperoxidase activity. Conclusion and implications: Results of this study indicated that pregabalin administration has beneficial effects upon the treatment of experimental colitis, which might be partly due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
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Comparison of four methods of colon cancer cell lysates preparation for ex vivo maturation of dendritic cells p. 43
Mohammad Roufarshbaf, Nafiseh Esmaeil, Vajihe Akbari
Background and purpose: One of the most effective methods for the development of dendritic cell (DC)-based cancer immunotherapy is ex vivo pulsing of DCs with tumor cell lysates (TCLs). However, antitumor immune responses of DCs are significantly influenced by how TCLs were prepared. Here, we compared four strategies of TCL preparation derived from colon cancer cells, HT-29, for ex vivo maturation of DCs. Experimental approach: Peripheral blood monocytes were isolated from healthy volunteers and incubated with granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor and interleukin (IL)-4 to differentiate into DCs in 10 days. Morphological properties, phenotype characteristics (i.e. CD83 and CD86), and cytokine production (i.e. IL-10 and interferon gamma) of DCs loaded with four different TCLs (i.e. freeze-thaw, hypochlorous acid (HOCl), hyperthermia, and UV irradiation) were evaluated. Findings/Results: HOCl preparations led to the generation of DCs with higher surface expression of maturation biomarkers (particularly CD83), while UV preparations resulted in DCs with lower levels of surface biomarkers compared to freeze-thawed preparations. The supernatant of DCs pulsed with HOCl preparation showed significantly higher levels of interferon gamma and lower levels of IL-10 compared with the other groups. Conclusion and implications: Our results suggest that pulsing DCs with HOCl preparation may be superior to other TCLs preparation strategies, possibly due to induction of rapid necrotic cell death.
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Novel N-substituted indole hydrazones as potential antiplatelet agents: synthesis, biological evaluations, and molecular docking studies p. 53
Navid Tavili, Shaya Mokhtari, Hafezeh Salehabadi, Marjan Esfahanizadeh, Shohreh Mohebbi
Background and purpose: Antiplatelet agents can diminish the chance of coronary heart diseases due to the prevention of unusual clotting in the arteries by inhibiting platelet aggregation and avoiding the formation of a blood clot. This mechanism can help to prevent ischemic stroke likewise. To improve the activity of these drugs and reduce their side effects, further studies are required. Experimental approach: Based on the previous studies representing the promising antiplatelet activity of indole hydrazones, a series of their homologs containing twenty-one compounds were prepared in two steps. First, alkylation reaction on the nitrogen of the indole ring, and second, chiff base formation by condensation of a primary amine and N-substituted indole-3 carbaldehyde. Consequently, their platelet anti-aggregation activity was evaluated based on the Born turbidimetric method. Findings/Results: Most of the compounds exhibited noticeable activity against platelet aggregation induced by arachidonic acid. Amongst them, two compounds 2e and 2f showed higher activity with IC50 values that made comparable to indomethacin and acetylsalicylic acid as standard drugs and had no toxicity on platelets. Conclusion and implications: The synthesized compounds exhibited promising activity against arachidonic acid-induced aggregation; however, none of them showed noticeable antiplatelet activity induced by adenosine di-phosphate. Chemical structure comparison of the prepared derivatives indicated the existence of a lipophilic medium-sized group on the phenyl ring increased their activity. In addition, the docking studies confirmed this hydrophobic interaction in the lipophilic pocket of cyclooxygenase-1 enzyme suggesting that hydrophobicity of this region plays a pivotal role in the anti-platelet activity of these compounds. To prove this finding, the enzymatic evaluation with the target enzyme is required.
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L-carnitine supplementation ameliorates insulin resistance in critically ill acute stroke patients: a randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled clinical trial p. 66
Malihe Nejati, Saeed Abbasi, Shadi Farsaei, Fatemeh Shafiee
Background and purpose: Insulin resistance (IR) can negatively affect clinical outcomes in acute ischemic stroke (IS) patients. Safe and cost-saving interventions are still needed to improve glycemic indices in this population. The primary objective was to evaluate L-carnitine (LC) effects in acute IS patients’ homeostatic model assessment of IR (HOMA-IR). Experimental approach: In this randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial, critically ill IS patients were allocated to receive daily oral L-carnitine (1.5 g) or a placebo for six days. Fasting serum levels of glucose, insulin, C-reactive protein, LC, and HOMA-IR were measured on days 1 and 7. Mechanical ventilation duration, ICU/hospital duration, illness severity score, sepsis, and death events were assessed. Findings/Results: Forty-eight patients were allocated to the research groups, 24 patients in each group, and all were included in the final analysis. LC administration showed a decrease in mean difference of HOMA-IR and insulin levels at day 7 compared to placebo, -0.94 ± 1.92 vs 0.87 ± 2.24 (P = 0.01) and -2.26 ± 6.81 vs 0.88 ± 4.95 (P = 0.03), respectively. However, LC administration did not result in significant improvement in clinical outcomes compared to placebo. The short duration of intervention and low sample size limited our results. Conclusion and implication: Supplementation of L-carnitine improved HOMA-IR index in acute IS patients admitted to the critical care unit. Supplementation of LC would be a potential option to help to control IR in critically ill acute IS patients.
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Antiproliferative activity of CD44 siRNA-PEI-PEG nanoparticles in glioblastoma: involvement of AKT signaling p. 78
Parvaneh Mahinfar, Ahad Mokhtarzadeh, Behzad Baradaran, Elham Siasi Torbati
Background and purpose: Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most invasive type of cancer which starts inside the brain. GBM cells were found to have similar properties to glioblastoma cancer stem cells. CD44 can be used as a marker of the cancer stem cells in a subset of glioblastoma tumor cells. Recent studies showed that CD44 is involved in developing cancer cells via the protein kinase B (PKB or AKT) signaling pathway. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the CD44 mRNA silencing effects on the glioblastoma cell cycle via AKT signaling pathway. Experimental approach: To determine CD44 expression in the samples of the patients with GBM, we used the analysis of data extracted from TCGA database. qRT-PCR and western blotting were used to evaluate the expression level of genes and proteins. Different cell cycles were evaluated by DAPI staining and flow cytometry. Findings/Results: Bioinformatics results showed that CD44 expression level in GBM tumor samples is higher than in normal samples. Effects of poly (ethylene imine)-polyethylene glycol (PEI-PEG)-loaded CD44 siRNA in cell cycle showed that CD44 silencing could inhibit cell cycle in G0-G1 phase by more than 20% compared to the negative control (P < 0.05). Furthermore, PEI-PEG-loaded CD44 siRNA reduces the expression of cyclin D1 and CKD-4. According to our findings, this structure also prevented AKT phosphorylation at Thr-308 and Ser-473. Conclusion and implications: Our results suggest that PEI-PEG-loaded CD44 siRNA may attenuate the cell cycle by suppressing AKT signaling pathway.
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Determination of plasma and erythrocyte levels of copper, magnesium and zinc by atomic absorption spectrometry in type-2 diabetes mellitus patients with metabolic syndrome p. 86
Amin Omidian, Morteza Pourfarzam, Seyed Mostafa Ghanadian, Fouzieh Zadhoush
Background and purpose: Imbalance in blood levels of trace elements is independent risk factor for metabolic syndrome (MetS), type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), and its complications. This study investigated plasma and erythrocyte levels of copper, magnesium, zinc, and their correlations with biochemical components of the MetS in T2DM patients compared to the healthy controls. Experimental approach: Forty men recently diagnosed T2DM with MetS without complications and thirty six age-matched healthy controls were enrolled in this cross-sectional study. Plasma and erythrocyte levels of selected elements were measured by graphite furnace atomic absorption spectroscopy. Findings/Results: The results of the present study showed significantly lower plasma levels of copper, magnesium, and zinc and lower erythrocytes copper in the patients’ group compared to the controls; while erythrocyte levels of magnesium and zinc were not significantly different between the two groups. Significant negative correlations were observed between plasma levels of copper with waist and hip circumferences, waist to hip ratio, systolic and diastolic blood pressures, fasting blood glucose, and glycated hemoglobin levels in all subjects; while erythrocyte copper levels showed significant negative correlation with triglyceride, and erythrocyte zinc was positively correlated with diastolic blood pressure and negatively with triglyceride. Conclusion and implications: Alterations of trace elements may have a significant role in the pathogenesis of MetS and T2DM patients. It is suggested that the body status of copper, magnesium, and zinc might be significantly correlated with components of MetS in T2DM patients; and plasma copper levels may be correlated with complications of type 2 diabetes mellitus.
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Design, synthesis, and molecular docking of cysteine-based sulphonamide derivatives as antimicrobial agents p. 99
Melford C Egbujor, Uchechukwu C Okoro, Sunday N Okafor, Samuel A Egu, Ifeanyi S Amasiatu, Pius I Egwuatu, Odera R Umeh, Eziafakaego M Ibo
Background and purpose: The preponderance of microbial infections remains a global challenge. In the present study, synthesis of novel cysteine-based antimicrobial agents and their biological evaluation is reported. Experimental approach: The reaction of p-toluenesulphonyl chloride with cysteine afforded 2-{[(4-methylphenyl)sulphonyl]amino}-3-sulphanylpropanoic acid [3] which was acetylated based on Lumiere-Barbier method using acetic anhydride. The ammonolysis of the acetylated compound [4] gave the carboxamide derivative [5] which reacted with aniline, aminopyridine and diaminopyrimidine via nickel catalyzed Buchwald-Hartwig amidation reaction to afford compounds 6a, 6b, and 6c, respectively. The compounds were characterized using FTIR, 1H-NMR, 13C-NMR, and elemental analysis. The in vitro antimicrobial activities were determined. Their physicochemical properties were generated in silico and the molecular docking studied bacterial and fungal infections. Findings/Results: Compounds 4, 6b, and 6c exhibited excellent in vitro antibacterial activities while compound 4 had the best antifungal activities. From the in silico antimicrobial results, compound 3 had a better binding affinity (-10.95 kcal/mol) than penicillin (-10.89 kcal/mol) while compounds 3 and 4 had binding affinities (-10.07 and -10.62kcal/mol) comparable to ketoconazole (-10.85 kcal/mol). Conclusion and implication: All the synthesized compounds exhibited significant antibacterial and antifungal activities and were confirmed to be potential antimicrobial agents.
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