Formononetin may protect aged hearts from ischemia/reperfusion damage by enhancing autophagic degradation.
Mol Med Rep. 2018 Dec ;18(6):4821-4830. Epub 2018 Oct 10. PMID: 30320398
Myocardial infarction is a leading cause of mortality worldwide, and timely blood/oxygen reperfusion may substantially improve the outcome of infarction. However, ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) may cause severe side effects through excess reactive oxygen species generation. To develop novel methods to relieve I/R induced cell damage, the present study used a component of traditional Chinese medicine. In the present study, isolated heart tissue from aged mice and H9C2 cells with chemically‑induced aging were used as experimental subjects, and it was demonstrated that formononetin was able to alleviate I/R‑induced cell or tissue apoptosis. By applying formononetin to I/R‑damaged tissue or cells, it was demonstrated that formononetin was able to enhance autophagy and thus alleviate I/R‑induced cell damage. Furthermore, it was observed that I/R was able to inhibit lysosomal degradation processes in aged tissues or cells by impairing the lysosome acidification level, and formononetin was able to reverse this process via the re‑acidification of lysosomes. In conclusion, the present study demonstrated that formononetin was able to alleviate I/R‑induced cellular apoptosis in aged cells by facilitating autophagy.