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Open access

Blandina Bernal-Morales, Gabriel Guillén-Ruiz, Jonathan Cueto-Escobedo, Juan Francisco Rodríguez-Landa and Carlos M. Contreras

Abstract

The present study investigated the sensitivity to stress and diazepam in weaning (21-day old) Wistar rats. A single 15-min session of forced swimming was used to induce anxiety-like behavior. The group that was forced to swim exhibited an increase in anxiety-like behavior in the elevated plus maze (EPM) and open field test (OFT) compared to the non-stressed group. Diazepam (1 h before the tests) reduced anxiety-like behavior in rats forced to swim compared to the vehicle stressed group. The dose-response curve for diazepam indicated that the 0.5 mg kg−1 dose (1 h before the EPM and OFT) was the minimum effective dose in reducing anxiety-like behavior without altering locomotor activity in weaning rats. These results indicate that weaning rats can develop anxiety-like behavior after a brief, single session of stress, and that rats at this age are seemingly more sensitive to diazepam than adult rats, which may be taken into account for clinical applications.

Open access

Lourdes A. Vega Rasgado, Guillermo Ceballos Reyes and Fernando Vega Díaz

Abstract

In an attempt to clarify the controversial role of nitric oxide (NO) in seizures, the effects of NO on brain GABA transaminase (GABA-T) activity and GABA levels were investigated. To this aim, the effects of the substrate (l-arginine) and inhibitors (Nω-nitro-l-arginine methyl ester, 7-nitroindazole) of NO synthase (NOS) on GABA-T activity and GABA levels in vitro and ex vivo were analyzed. In vitro NO diminished GABA-T activity and increased GABA. Ex vivo NO modified GABA-T activity and GABA levels biphasically. Inhibition of endothelial and neuronal NOS (eNOS and nNOS) had opposite effects on GABA-T activity and GABA levels, even during seizures induced by pentylenetetrazole. Different effects of NO on GABA-T activity and on GABA levels, depending on the NOS isoform involved, may explain its contradictory role in seizures, the endothelial NOS acting as an anticonvulsant and the neuronal NOS as a proconvulsant. nNOS inhibitors may represent a new generation of antiepileptics.

Open access

Ahmed M. Gouda, Ahmed H. Abdelazeem, Ashraf N. Abdalla and Muhammad Ahmed

Abstract

Towards optimization of the pyrrolizine-5-carboxamide scaffold, a novel series of six derivatives (4a-c and 5a-c) was prepared and evaluated for their anti-inflammatory, analgesic and anticancer activities. The (EZ)-7-cyano-6-((4-hydroxybenzylidene)amino)-N-(p-tolyl)-2,3-dihydro-1H-pyrrolizine-5-carboxamide (4b) and (EZ)-6-((4-chlorobenzylidene)-amino)-7-cyano-N-(p-tolyl)-2,3-dihydro-1H-pyrrolizine-5-carboxamide (5b) bearing the electron donating methyl group showed the highest anti-inflammatory activity while (EZ)-6-((4-chlorobenzylidene)amino)-7-cyano-N-phenyl-2,3-dihydro-1H-pyrrolizine-5-carboxamide (5a) was the most active analgesic agent. Cytotoxicity of the new compounds was evaluated against the MCF-7, A2780 and HT29 cancer cell lines using the MTT assay. Compounds 4b and 5b displayed high anticancer activity with IC 50 in the range of 0.30–0.92 μmol L−1 against the three cell lines, while compound (EZ)-N-(4-chlorophenyl)-7-cyano-6-((4-hydroxybenzylidene)-amino)-2,3-dihydro-1H-pyrrolizine-5-carboxamide (4c) was the most active against MCF-7 cells (IC 50 = 0.08 μmol L−1). Both the anti-inflammatory and anticancer activities of the new compounds were dependent on the type of substituent on the phenyl rings. Substituents with opposite electronic effects on the two phenyl rings are preferable for high cytotoxicity against the MCF-7 and A2780 cells. COX inhibition was suggested as the molecular mechanism of the anti-inflammatory activity of the new compounds while no clear relationship could be observed between COX inhibition and anticancer activity. Compound 5b, the most active against the three cell lines, induced dose-dependent early apoptosis with 0.1–0.2 % necrosis in MCF-7 cells. New compounds showed promising drug-likeness scores while the docking study revealed high binding affinity to COX-2. Taken together, this study highlighted the significant impact of the substituents on the anti-inflammatory and anticancer activity of pyrrolizine-5-carboxamides, which could help in further optimization to discover good leads for the treatment of cancer and inflammation.

Open access

Xiao-Ming Si, Yu-Hua Tian, Sha-Sha Zhang, Hua Gao, Kun Liu and Jing-Yu Jin

Abstract

The present study is aimed at testing the antidepressant--like effects and probable mechanisms of action of low molecular mass chondroitin sulfate (LMMCS) on depression induced by chronic unpredictable mild stress (CUMS) in mice. Four weeks of CUMS exposure resulted in depressive-like behavior, expressed by a significant decrease in the locomotor activity and sucrose consumption and increased immobility time in the forced swim test. Further, there was a significant reduction of 5-HT level in the hippocampus region of depressed mice. Treatment of mice for four weeks with LMMCS ameliorated significantly both the behavioral and biochemical changes induced by CUMS. These novel results suggest that LMMCS produces an antidepressant-like effect in mice subjected to CUMS, which might be related, at least in part, to the increase of 5-HT concentration in the hippocampus.

Open access

Peace Mabeta, Kristina Pavić and Branka Zorc

Abstract

In our previous paper, we showed that three primaquine-cinnamic acid conjugates composed of primaquine (PQ) residue and cinnamic acid derivatives (CADs) bound directly by an amide linkage (1) or through an acylsemicarbazide spacer (2 and 3) had significant growth inhibitory effects on some cancer cell lines. Compound 1 induced significant growth inhibition in the colorectal adenocarcinoma (SW620), human breast adenocarcinoma (MCF-7) and cervical carcinoma (HeLa) cell lines, while compounds 2 and 3 selectively inhibited the growth of MCF-7 cells. To better understand the underlying mechanisms of action of these PQ-CADs, morphological studies of the effects of test compounds on MCF-7 cells were undertaken using haematoxylin and eosin stain. Further analysis to determine the effects of test compounds on caspase activity and on the levels of apoptosis proteins were undertaken using the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Haematoxylin and eosin staining revealed that compounds 1 and 3 induced morphological changes in MCF-7 cells characteristic of apoptosis, while 2-treated cells were in interphase. Cell cycle analysis showed that cells treated with 1 and 3 were in sub-G1, while cells treated with 2 were mainly in interphase (G1 phase). Further, the study showed that the treatment of MCF-7 cells with 1 and 3 resulted in poly ADP ribose polymerase (PARP) cleavage as well as caspase-9 activation, indicating that they induced apoptotic cell death. We further investigated their effects on two important processes during metastasis, namely, migration and invasion. Compounds 1 and 3 inhibited the migration and invasion of MCF-7 cells, while compound 2 had a marginal effect.

Open access

Plamen Ivanov Zagorchev, Elisaveta Georgieva Apostolova, Bissera Asenova Pilicheva, Milena Nenkova Draganova-Filipova, Vesela Yulieva Kokova and Julian Borisov Lukanov

Abstract

The aim of this study is to evaluate the antihyperalgesic and antinociceptive effects of two formulations containing peat water extracts using a model of carrageenan-induced hyperalgesia, combined with a test with a mechanical stimulus, and a hot plate test. Rats were divided into seven groups (n = 6) and received local treatment with two peat formulations and two diclofenac formulations dissolved in carbopol gel and Wolff® basis creme, respectively. Carbopol gel, Wolff® basis creme and 0.9 % NaCl without tested substances were used as controls. Both peat formulations exerted an unambiguous antihyperalgesic effect 60 minutes after the treatment. In the hot plate test, the rats treated with the Wolff® basis creme peat formulation showed a tendency to prolonged latency on the first hour. The results could be explained by partial activation of peripheral α2-adrenoceptors and the possible COX-2 suppressive activity.

Open access

Mir-Ali Molaei, Karim Osouli-Bostanabad, Khosro Adibkia, Javad Shokri, Solmaz Asnaashari and Yousef Javadzadeh

Abstract

The study was conducted to enhance the dissolution rate of ketoconazole (KCZ) (a poorly water-soluble drug) using the liquisolid technique. Microcrystalline cellulose, colloidal silica, PEG400 and polyvinyl pyrrolidone (PVP) were employed as a carrier, coating substance, nonvolatile solvent and additive in the KCZ liquisolid compact formulation, respectively. The drug-to-PEG400 and carrier-to-coating ratio variations, PVP concentration and aging effects on the in vitro release behavior were assessed. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) and X-ray powder diffraction (XRD) data revealed no alterations in the crystalline form of the drug and the KCZ-excipient interactions within the process. The load factor and the drug release rate were significantly enhanced compared to directly compressed tablets in the presence of the additive. Increasing the PEG400-to-drug ratio in liquid medications enhanced the dissolution rate remarkably. The dissolution profile and hardness of liquisolid compacts were not significantly altered by keeping the tablets at 40 °C and relative humidity of 75 % for 6 months. With the proposed modification of the liquisolid process, it is possible to obtain flowable, compactible liquisolid powders of high-dose poorly-water soluble drugs with an enhanced dissolution rate.

Open access

Ana Miklavžin, Mateja Cegnar, Janez Kerč and Julijana Kristl

Abstract

Oral delivery of protein drugs is greatly limited by low hydrophobicity, an important determinant for intestinal epithelial permeation and bioavailability. Herein, surface properties of recombinant erythropoietin were investigated using the fluorescent dye bis-ANS to monitor relative hydrophobicity for correlation with permeabilities with Caco-2 cells. At various pHs, bis-ANS fluorescence intensity indicated different surface hydrophobicities of erythropoietin molecules. Erythropoietin incorporated in chitosan or chitosan-trimethylchitosan (CS-TMC) nanoparticles prepared by polyelectrolyte complexation and ionotropic gelation with tripolyphosphate also showed different surface hydrophobicities. Chitosan nanoparticles with erythropoietin provided the most hydrophobic surface, followed by free erythropoietin (in water) and that loaded into CS-TMC nanoparticles. Chitosan nanoparticles were more effective than CS-TMC nanoparticles for permeation of erythropoietin across Caco-2 cell monolayers; the lowest permeability was shown by erythropoietin itself. Thus, hydrophilic protein molecules complexed with polyelectrolytes can provide more hydrophobic surfaces that enhance transepithelial permeability. This bis-ANS method also provides valuable information for the design of polyelectrolyte nanoparticules for oral delivery of protein drugs.

Open access

Jitka Mužíková, Alena Komersová, Václav Lochař, Lucie Vildová, Bára Vošoustová and Martin Bartoš

Abstract

This paper evaluates and compares the properties of directly compressible tabletting materials and matrix tablets containing a combination of α-lactose monohydrate and microcrystalline cellulose in the 3:1 ratio in a physical mixture and in a coprocessed dry binder. Tested parameters include flow properties, compressibility, compactibility and the rate of drug release from tablets. Compressibility is evaluated by means of the energy profile of the compression process. Compactibility is evaluated by means of the tensile strength of the tablets. Dissolution testing is done using the rotating basket method. Dissolution profiles are evaluated by non-linear regression analysis.

Total energy of compression and plasticity values were higher in tabletting materials with the coprocessed dry binder. Increasing additions of polyvinyl alcohol decreased the values of total energy of compression, plasticity, tensile strength of tablets and drug release rate. Dissolution behaviour of tablets, which contained the physical mixture or coprocessed dry binder and the same amount of polyvinyl alcohol, was comparable.

Open access

Senar Aydin, Mehmet Emin Aydin, Fatma Beduk, Arzu Tekinay and Havva Kilic

Abstract

A novel micro-extraction technique for a rapid and sensitive analysis of diclofenac (DCF) in water samples has been developed. DCF was derivatized and extracted simultaneously using vortex-assisted liquid-liquid micro-extraction (VALLME) prior to gas chromatography with mass spectrometry detection. The effects of extraction solvent volume, extraction and derivatization time and ionic strength of the sample were studied using 23 factorial experimental design. The optimum extraction conditions were as follows: 200 μL of chloroform, 25 μL of N-methyl-N-trimethylsilyl-trifluoroacetamide (MSTFA) derivatization reagent, vortex extraction and derivatization time 5 min at 3000 rpm. The extraction recovery for different fortification levels was 98 %. Also, the proposed micro-extraction method exhibited results comparable with the solid phase extraction of real water samples. The proposed one-step VALLME and derivatization method is simpler and faster than the conventional extraction and derivatization methods used for the determination of DCF in real water samples.