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Amyloid beta is a major constituent of the plaques found in the brains of patients suffering from Alzheimer's disease (AD). A growing body of research work suggests that neuroinflammation plays important roles in the development of AD. Thus, considerable efforts are directed towards identification of compounds that can reduce or inhibit neuroinflammation. Here, we show that sinomenine, a compound present in a Chinese medicinal plant, Sinomenium acutum, inhibits oligomeric amyloid beta-induced production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), nitric oxide (NO) and inflammation-related molecules from astrocytic cells. The conditioned medium from oligomeric amyloid beta-treated astrocytic cells induces cell death in the hippocampal neuronal cells. Importantly, sinomenine inhibits this cell death. In addition, this compound has inhibitory effects on the production of ROS, NO and inflammation-related factors from oligomeric amyloid-beta treated human astrocytes. Finally, the conditioned medium from oligomeric amyloid beta-treated human astrocytes induces cell death in the primary culture of human neurons, which is inhibited by sinomenine. Thus, sinomenine inhibits amyloid beta-induced production of toxic factors from astrocytes, and confers protection to hippocampal neuronal cells as well as human neurons against indirect toxicity. The results suggest that this compound could provide beneficial effects in AD and other neurodegenerative conditions by reducing inflammation and neuronal cell death.
Singh, D., Agrawal, A., Singal, C. M. S., Pandey, H. S., Seth, P., & Sharma, S. K. (2020). Sinomenine inhibits amyloid beta-induced astrocyte activation and protects neurons against indirect toxicity. Molecular Brain, 13(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13041-020-00569-6