Abstract Title:

Neuroprotective effect of crocin against rotenone-induced Parkinson's disease in rats: Interplay between PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling pathway and enhanced expression of miRNA-7 and miRNA-221.

Abstract Source:

Neuropharmacology. 2019 Dec 4:107900. Epub 2019 Dec 4. PMID: 31811872

Abstract Author(s):

Rania M Salama, Ghada A Abdel-Latif, Samah S Abbas, Hekmat M El Magdoub, Mona F Schaalan

Article Affiliation:

Rania M Salama


The complexity of Parkinson's disease (PD) pathogenesis is attributed to multiple pathways involved in the neurodegeneration process. Among these pathways arise the phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)/protein kinase B (Akt), and mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) axis, where inhibition of this cascade has been implicated in the pathogenesis of PD. Crocin, a carotenoid found in saffron, has shown beneficial effects against neurodegenerative diseases via anti-apoptotic, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant activities. However, the exact molecular pathways involved in crocin's neuroprotective effects have not been fully elucidated. This drove our attention to unravel the possible involvement of PI3k/Akt/mTOR pathway in the neuroprotective effect of crocin against rotenone (ROT)-induced PD in rats. Sixty adult male Wistar rats were divided into four groups: control, crocin (30 mg/kg/day; i.p.), ROT (1.5 mg/kg/day, i.p.) and ROT pre-treated with crocin for 30 days. Crocin administration showed a substantial behavioral improvement. At the cellular level, crocin significantly stimulated the PI3K/Akt pathway, augmented phospho-proline-rich Akt substrate 40 kDa (p-PRAS40), mTOR and p-p70S6K levels. Consequently, glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β), forkhead box transcription factor of the O class (FoxO3a), and the downstream caspase-9 were decreased; thus, attenuating neurodegeneration, which was witnessed through increased tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and dopamine (DA), and hampered α-synuclein levels. Moreover, crocin showed enhanced expression of microRNA-7 (miRNA-7) and miRNA-221, which contributed to Akt/mTOR activation. These results were verified by improved histopathological portrait and increased number of intact neurons. In conclusion, crocin showed promising neuroprotective effects in ROT-induced PD via activation of PI3K/Akt/mTOR axis and enhanced miRNA-7 and miRNA-221.

Study Type : Animal Study

Print Options

Key Research Topics

Sayer Ji
Founder of GreenMedInfo.com

Subscribe to our informative Newsletter & get Nature's Evidence-Based Pharmacy

Our newsletter serves 500,000 with essential news, research & healthy tips, daily.

Download Now

500+ pages of Natural Medicine Alternatives and Information.

This website is for information purposes only. By providing the information contained herein we are not diagnosing, treating, curing, mitigating, or preventing any type of disease or medical condition. Before beginning any type of natural, integrative or conventional treatment regimen, it is advisable to seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.

© Copyright 2008-2023 GreenMedInfo.com, Journal Articles copyright of original owners, MeSH copyright NLM.