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1.  Ethyl acetate extract of germinated brown rice attenuates hydrogen peroxide-induced oxidative stress in human SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells: role of anti-apoptotic, pro-survival and antioxidant genes 
There are reports of improved metabolic outcomes due to consumption of germinated brown rice (GBR). Many of the functional effects of GBR can be linked to its high amounts of antioxidants. Interestingly, dietary components with high antioxidants have shown promise in the prevention of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease (AD). This effect of dietary components is mostly based on their ability to prevent apoptosis, which is believed to link oxidative damage to pathological changes in AD. In view of the rich antioxidant content of GBR, we studied its potential to modulate processes leading up to AD.
The total phenolic content and antioxidant capacity of the ethyl acetate extract of GBR were compared to that of brown rice (BR), and the cytotoxicity of both extracts were determined on human SH-SY5Y neuronal cells using 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) Assay. Based on its higher antioxidant potentials, the effect of the GBR extract on morphological changes due to hydrogen peroxide (H2O2)-induced oxidative damage in human SH-SY5Y neuronal cells was examined using inverted light microscope and fluorescence microscope by means of acridine orange-propidium iodide (AO/PI) staining. Also, evaluation of the transcriptional regulation of antioxidant and apoptotic genes was carried out using Multiplex Gene Expression System.
The ethyl acetate extract of GBR had higher total phenolic content and antioxidant capacity compared to BR. The cytotoxicity results showed that GBR extract did not cause any damage to the human SH-SY5Y neuronal cells at concentrations of up to 20 ppm, and the morphological analyses showed that the GBR extract (up to 10 ppm) prevented H2O2-induced apoptotic changes in the cells. Furthermore, multiplex gene expression analyses showed that the protection of the cells by the GBR extract was linked to its ability to induce transcriptional changes in antioxidant (SOD 1, SOD 2 and catalase) and apoptotic (AKT, NF-Kβ, ERK1/2, JNK, p53 and p38 MAPK) genes that tended towards survival.
Taken together, the results of our study showed that the ethyl acetate extract of GBR, with high antioxidant potentials, could prevent H2O2-induced oxidative damage in SH-SY5Y cells. The potential of GBR and its neuroprotective mechanism in ameliorating oxidative stress-related cytotoxicity is therefore worth exploring further.
PMCID: PMC3726323  PMID: 23866310
Germinated brown rice; Antioxidant; Oxidative stress; Neuroprotective; SH-SY5Y
2.  Antioxidative Effects of Germinated Brown Rice-Derived Extracts on H2O2-Induced Oxidative Stress in HepG2 Cells 
The antioxidant properties of germinated brown rice (GBR) are likely mediated by multiple bioactives. To test this hypothesis, HepG2 cells pretreated with GBR extracts, rich in acylated steryl glycoside (ASG), gamma amino butyric acid GABA), phenolics or oryzanol, were incubated with hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and their hydroxyl radical (OH•) scavenging capacities and thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances (TBARS) generation were evaluated. Results showed that GBR-extracts increased OH• scavenging activities in both cell-free medium and posttreatment culture media, suggesting that the extracts were both direct- and indirect-acting against OH•. The levels of TBARS in the culture medium after treatment were also reduced by all the extracts. In addition, H2O2 produced transcriptional changes in p53, JNK, p38 MAPK, AKT, BAX, and CDK4 that were inclined towards apoptosis, while GBR-extracts showed some transcriptional changes (upregulation of BAX and p53) that suggested an inclination for apoptosis although other changes (upregulation of antioxidant genes, AKT, JNK, and p38 MAPK) suggested that GBR-extracts favored survival of the HepG2 cells. Our findings show that GBR bioactive-rich extracts reduce oxidative stress through improvement in antioxidant capacity, partly mediated through transcriptional regulation of antioxidant and prosurvival genes.
PMCID: PMC4241308  PMID: 25431609
3.  Germinated brown rice as a value added rice product: A review 
Rice is a staple food for over half of the world’s population. Germinated brown rice (GBR) is considered whole food because only the outermost layer i.e. the hull of the rice kernel is removed which causes least damage to its nutritional value. Brown rice can be soaked in water at 30 °C for specified hours for germination to get GBR. Soaking for 3 h and sprouting for 21 h has been found to be optimum for getting the highest gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) content in GBR, which is the main reason behind the popularity of GBR. The intake of GBR instead of white rice ameliorates the hyperglycemia, boosts the immune system, lowers blood pressure, inhibits development of cancer cells and assists the treatment of anxiety disorders. Germination process could be used as enzymatic modification of starch that affects pasting properties of GBR flour. GBR would improve the bread quality when substituted for wheat flour. It is concluded that GBR has potential to become innovative rice by preserving all nutrients in the rice grain for human consumption in order to create the highest value from rice.
PMCID: PMC3551059  PMID: 23572802
Germinated brown rice; Gamma-aminobutyric acid; Health benefits; Brown rice
4.  Antidiabetic Properties of Germinated Brown Rice: A Systematic Review 
Diet is an important variable in the course of type 2 diabetes, which has generated interest in dietary options like germinated brown rice (GBR) for effective management of the disease among rice-consuming populations. In vitro data and animal experiments show that GBR has potentials as a functional diet for managing this disease, and short-term clinical studies indicate encouraging results. Mechanisms for antidiabetic effects of GBR due to bioactive compounds like γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA), γ-oryzanol, dietary fibre, phenolics, vitamins, acylated steryl β-glucoside, and minerals include antihyperglycemia, low insulin index, antioxidative effect, antithrombosis, antihypertensive effect, hypocholesterolemia, and neuroprotective effects. The evidence so far suggests that there may be enormous benefits for diabetics in rice-consuming populations if white rice is replaced with GBR. However, long-term clinical studies are still needed to verify these findings on antidiabetic effects of GBR. Thus, we present a review on the antidiabetic properties of GBR from relevant preclinical and clinical studies, in order to provide detailed information on this subject for researchers to review the potential of GBR in combating this disease.
PMCID: PMC3529503  PMID: 23304216
5.  Effects of White Rice, Brown Rice and Germinated Brown Rice on Antioxidant Status of Type 2 Diabetic Rats 
Oxidative stress is implicated in the pathogenesis of diabetic complications, and can be increased by diet like white rice (WR). Though brown rice (BR) and germinated brown rice (GBR) have high antioxidant potentials as a result of their bioactive compounds, reports of their effects on oxidative stress-related conditions such as type 2 diabetes are lacking. We hypothesized therefore that if BR and GBR were to improve antioxidant status, they would be better for rice consuming populations instead of the commonly consumed WR that is known to promote oxidative stress. This will then provide further reasons why less consumption of WR should be encouraged. We studied the effects of GBR on antioxidant status in type 2 diabetic rats, induced using a high-fat diet and streptozotocin injection, and also evaluated the effects of WR, BR and GBR on catalase and superoxide dismutase genes. As dietary components, BR and GBR improved glycemia and kidney hydroxyl radical scavenging activities, and prevented the deterioration of total antioxidant status in type 2 diabetic rats. Similarly, GBR preserved liver enzymes, as well as serum creatinine. There seem to be evidence that upregulation of superoxide dismutase gene may likely be an underlying mechanism for antioxidant effects of BR and GBR. Our results provide insight into the effects of different rice types on antioxidant status in type 2 diabetes. The results also suggest that WR consumption, contrary to BR and GBR, may worsen antioxidant status that may lead to more damage by free radicals. From the data so far, the antioxidant effects of BR and GBR are worth studying further especially on a long term to determine their effects on development of oxidative stress-related problems, which WR consumption predisposes to.
PMCID: PMC3497306  PMID: 23202932
antioxidants; diabetes; electron spin resonance; germinated brown rice; white rice; nutrigenomics
6.  Germinated brown rice (GBR) reduces the incidence of aberrant crypt foci with the involvement of β-catenin and COX-2 in azoxymethane-induced colon cancer in rats 
Nutrition Journal  2010;9:16.
Chemoprevention has become an important area in cancer research due to the failure of current therapeutic modalities. Epidemiological and preclinical studies have demonstrated that nutrition plays a vital role in the etiology of cancer. This study was conducted to determine the chemopreventive effects of germinated brown rice (GBR) in rats induced with colon cancer. GBR is brown rice that has been claimed to be richer in nutrients compared to the common white rice. The male Sprague Dawley rats (6 weeks of age) were randomly divided into 5 groups: (G1) positive control (with colon cancer, unfed with GBR), (G2) fed with 2.5 g/kg of GBR (GBR (g)/weight of rat (kg)), (G3) fed with 5 g/kg of GBR, (G4) fed with 10 g/kg of GBR and (G5) negative control (without colon cancer, unfed with GBR). GBR was administered orally once daily via gavage after injection of 15 mg/kg of body weight of azoxymethane (AOM) once a week for two weeks, intraperitonially. After 8 weeks of treatment, animals were sacrificed and colons were removed. Colonic aberrant crypt foci (ACF) were evaluated histopathologically. Total number of ACF and AC, and multicrypt of ACF, and the expression of β-catenin and COX-2 reduced significantly (p < 0.05) in all the groups treated with GBR (G2, G3 and G4) compared to the control group (G1). Spearman rank correlation test showed significant positive linear relationship between total β-catenin and COX-2 score (Spearman's rho = 0.616, p = 0.0001). It is demonstrated that GBR inhibits the development of total number of ACF and AC, and multicrypt of ACF, reduces the expression of β-catenin and COX-2, and thus can be a promising dietary supplement in prevention of colon cancer.
PMCID: PMC2868780  PMID: 20346115
7.  A novel anti-CD19 monoclonal antibody (GBR 401) with high killing activity against B cell malignancies 
CD19 is a B cell lineage specific surface receptor whose broad expression, from pro-B cells to early plasma cells, makes it an attractive target for the immunotherapy of B cell malignancies. In this study we present the generation of a novel humanized anti-CD19 monoclonal antibody (mAb), GBR 401, and investigate its therapeutic potential on human B cell malignancies.
GBR 401 was partially defucosylated in order to enhance its cytotoxic function. We analyzed the in vitro depleting effects of GBR 401 against B cell lines and primary malignant B cells from patients in the presence or in absence of purified NK cells isolated from healthy donors. In vivo, the antibody dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) efficacy of GBR 401 was assessed in a B cell depletion model consisting of SCID mice injected with healthy human donor PBMC, and a malignant B cell depletion model where SCID mice are xenografted with both primary human B-CLL tumors and heterologous human NK cells. Furthermore, the anti-tumor activity of GBR 401 was also evaluated in a xenochimeric mouse model of human Burkitt lymphoma using mice xenografted intravenously with Raji cells. Pharmacological inhibition tests were used to characterize the mechanism of the cell death induced by GBR 401.
GBR 401 exerts a potent in vitro and in vivo cytotoxic activity against primary samples from patients representing various B-cell malignancies. GBR 401 elicits a markedly higher level of ADCC on primary malignant B cells when compared to fucosylated similar mAb and to Rituximab, the current anti-CD20 mAb standard immunotherapeutic treatment for B cell malignancies, showing killing at 500 times lower concentrations. Of interest, GBR 401 also exhibits a potent direct killing effect in different malignant B cell lines that involves homotypic aggregation mediated by actin relocalization.
These results contribute to consolidate clinical interest in developing GBR 401 for treatment of hematopoietic B cell malignancies, particularly for patients refractory to anti-CD20 mAb therapies.
PMCID: PMC4021825  PMID: 24731302
B cell malignancies; GBR 401; Anti-CD19 monoclonal antibody; ADCC; Therapeutic antibody
8.  The Hypocholesterolemic Effect of Germinated Brown Rice Involves the Upregulation of the Apolipoprotein A1 and Low-Density Lipoprotein Receptor Genes 
Journal of Diabetes Research  2013;2013:134694.
Germinated brown rice (GBR) is rich in bioactive compounds, which confer GBR with many functional properties. Evidence of its hypocholesterolemic effects is emerging, but the exact mechanisms of action and bioactive compounds involved have not been fully documented. Using type 2 diabetic rats, we studied the effects of white rice, GBR, and brown rice (BR) on lipid profile and on the regulation of selected genes involved in cholesterol metabolism. Our results showed that the upregulation of apolipoprotein A1 and low-density lipoprotein receptor genes was involved in the hypocholesterolemic effects of GBR. Additionally, in vitro studies using HEPG2 cells showed that acylated steryl glycoside, gamma amino butyric acid, and oryzanol and phenolic extracts of GBR contribute to the nutrigenomic regulation of these genes. Transcriptional and nontranscriptional mechanisms are likely involved in the overall hypocholesterolemic effects of GBR suggesting that it may have an impact on the prevention and/or management of hypercholesterolemia due to a wide variety of metabolic perturbations. However, there is need to conduct long-term clinical trials to determine the clinical relevance of the hypocholesterolemic effects of GBR determined through animal studies.
PMCID: PMC3647596  PMID: 23671850
9.  Germinated brown rice and its bioactives modulate the activity of uterine cells in oophorectomised rats as evidenced by gross cytohistological and immunohistochemical changes 
Germinated brown rice (GBR) is gaining momentum in the area of biomedical research due to its increased use as a nutraceutical for the management of diseases. The effect of GBR on the reproductive organs of oophorectomised rats was studied using the gross, cytological, histological and immunohistochemical changes, with the aim of reducing atrophy and dryness of the genital organs in menopause.
Experimental rats were divided into eight groups of six rats per group. Groups 1, 2 and 3 (sham-operated (SH), oophorectomised without treatment (OVX) and oophorectomised treated with 0.2 mg/kg oestrogen, respectively) served as the controls. The groups 4,5,6,7 and 8 were treated with 20 mg/kg Remifemin, 200 mg/kg of GBR, ASG, oryzanol and GABA, respectively. All treatments were administered orally, once daily for 8 weeks. Vaginal smear cytology was done at the 7th week on all the rats. The weight and dimensions of the uterus and vagina were determined after sacrifice of the rats. Uterine and vaginal tissues were taken for histology and Immunohistochemical examinations.
GBR and its bioactives treated groups significantly increased the weight and length of both the uterus and the vagina when compared to Oophorectomised non-treated group (OVX-non-treated) (p < 0.05). Significant changes were observed in the ratio of cornified epithelial cells and number of leucocytes in the vaginal cytology between the oophorectomised non-treated and treated groups. There was also an increase in the luminal and glandular epithelial cells activity in the treated compared with the untreated groups histologically. Immunohistochemical staining showed specific proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) in the luminal and glandular epithelium of the treated groups, which was absent in the OVX-non-treated group. GBR improved the length and weight of the uterus and also increased the number of glandular and luminal cells epithelia of the vagina.
GBR and its bioactives could be a potential alternative in improving reproductive system atrophy, dryness and discomfort during menopause.
PMCID: PMC3750460  PMID: 23899096
Germinated brown rice; Menopause; Uterine atrophy; Vagina dryness; Cyto-histology; Immunohistochemistry
10.  Effect of germinated brown rice extracts on pancreatic lipase, adipogenesis and lipolysis in 3T3-L1 adipocytes 
This study investigated anti-obesity effects of seven different solvent (n-hexane, toluene, dicholoromethane, ethyl acetate, absolute methanol, 80% methanol and deionized water) extracts of germinated brown rice (GBR) on pancreatic lipase activity, adipogenesis and lipolysis in 3T3-L1 adipocytes.
GBR were extracted separately by employing different solvents with ultrasound-assisted. Pancreatic lipase activity was determined spectrophotometrically by measuring the hydrolysis of p-nitrophenyl butyrate (p-NPB) to p-nitrophenol at 405 nm. Adipogenesis and lipolysis were assayed in fully differentiated 3T3-L1 adipocytes by using Oil Red O staining and glycerol release measurement.
GBR extract using hexane showed the highest inhibitory effect (13.58 ± 0.860%) at concentration of 200 μg/ml followed by hexane extract at 100 μg/ml (9.98 ± 1.048%) while ethyl acetate extract showed the lowest (2.62 ± 0.677%) at concentration of 200 μg/ml on pancreatic lipase activity. Water extract at 300 μg/ml showed 61.55 ± 3.824% of Oil Red O staining material (OROSM), a marker of adipogenesis. It significantly decrease (p < 0.05) lipid accumulation than control (OROSM = 100%), follow by ethyl acetate extract at 300 μg/ml (OROSM = 65.17 ± 3.131%). All the GBR extracts induced lipolysis with 1.22-1.83 fold of greater glycerol release than control.
GBR extracts especially the least polar and intermediate polar solvent extracts exhibited inhibitory effect on pancreatic lipase, decrease fat accumulation by adipocyte differentiation inhibition, and stimulate lipolysis on adipocytes. Therefore, GBR could be furthered study and developed as a functional food in helping the treatment and/or prevention of obesity.
PMCID: PMC4232653  PMID: 25367070
Obesity; Germinated brown rice; Pancreatic lipase; 3T3-L1 adipocytes
11.  Effects of Germinated Brown Rice and Its Bioactive Compounds on the Expression of the Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor Gamma Gene 
Nutrients  2013;5(2):468-477.
Dysregulated metabolism is implicated in obesity and other disease conditions like type 2 diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular diseases, which are linked to abnormalities of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARγ). PPARγ has been the focus of much research aimed at managing these diseases. Also, germinated brown rice (GBR) is known to possess antidiabetic, antiobesity and hypocholesterolemic effects. We hypothesized that GBR bioactive compounds may mediate some of the improvements in metabolic indices through PPARγ modulation. Cultured HEP-G2 cells were treated with 50 ppm and 100 ppm of extracts from GBR (GABA, ASG and oryzanol) after determination of cell viabilities using MTT assays. Results showed that all extracts upregulated the expression of the PPARγ. However, combination of all three extracts showed downregulation of the gene, suggesting that, in combination, the effects of these bioactives differ from their individual effects likely mediated through competitive inhibition of the gene. Upregulation of the gene may have therapeutic potential in diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular diseases, while its downregulation likely contributes to GBR’s antiobesity effects. These potentials are worth studying further.
PMCID: PMC3635206  PMID: 23389305
peroxisome proliferator activated receptor gamma; germinated brown rice; oryzanol; gamma amino butyric acid; acylated steryl glycoside
12.  Estrogen receptor modulatory effects of germinated brown rice bioactives in the uterus of rats through the regulation of estrogen-induced genes 
The expression of genes regulated by estrogen in the uterus was studied in ovariectomized (OVX) rats treated with germinated brown rice (GBR) bioactives, and compared to Remifemin or estrogen at different doses to identify the regulation of these genes in the uterus and their molecular mechanisms.
Rats were treated orally with GBR bioactives (phenolics), acylated steryl glucosides (ASG), γ-amino butyric acid (GABA), and γ-oryzanol (ORZ) at 100 and 200 mg/kg, Remifemin (REM) at 10 mg/kg and 20 mg/kg, or estrogen (EST) at 0.2 mg/kg. Ribonucleic acid (RNA) was extracted from the uterus, and messenger (m)RNA expression of selected genes encoding estrogen receptor-beta (ER-β), calcium-binding protein (CaBP9k), complement protein (C3), heat shock protein 70 kDa (HSP70), and interleukin (IL)-4 receptor were quantified. Similarly, serum steroid hormone concentration was monitored at 2, 4, and 8 weeks after treatments. ER-β antibody binding to the uterus sections was also studied using immunohistochemistry.
The group treated with EST (0.2 mg/kg) upregulated ER-β, C3, and IL-4 receptor genes compared to other groups (P<0.001). GBR phenolics (200 mg/kg) treatment upregulated the ER-β gene almost to the level of the sham non-treated group. The CaBP9k gene showed upregulation in groups treated with ASG (200 mg/kg), EST (0.2 mg/kg), and ORZ (200 mg/kg) (P<0.05). Estrogen levels increased in groups treated with EST, ASG, and ORZ (200 mg/kg) compared to the OVX untreated group (P<0.05), and there was a slight non-significant decrease (P>0.05) in the progesterone levels in the OVX untreated group compared to the sham and other treated groups. There was a significant increase at 8 weeks in the level of FSH (P<0.05) in the treated groups compared to the OVX untreated group. There was no significant difference (P>0.05) in serum luteinizing hormone (LH) between the OVX untreated group and other groups. The sham and GBR phenolics treated group showed ER-β reactivity at the glandular epithelium, while the group treated with EST showed immunoreactivity at the glandular, luminal, and stromal epithelium.
GBR phenolics moderately regulate the expression of ER-β, HSP70, and IL-4 receptor genes, and gave a positive immunoreaction to ER-β antigen in the uterus. ASG regulates the expression of CaBP9k and IL-4 receptor genes, and ORZ regulates the expression of the CaBP9k gene, while GABA at 100 mg/kg regulates the expression of the HSP70 gene. GBR and its bioactives might have an effect on estrogen-regulated genes in the uterus of rats.
PMCID: PMC3854924  PMID: 24324328
estrogen receptor-β gene; GBR-bioactives; serum hormonal level; uterine tissue
13.  Bone mass density estimation: Archimede’s principle versus automatic X-ray histogram and edge detection technique in ovariectomized rats treated with germinated brown rice bioactives 
Bone mass density is an important parameter used in the estimation of the severity and depth of lesions in osteoporosis. Estimation of bone density using existing methods in experimental models has its advantages as well as drawbacks.
Materials and methods
In this study, the X-ray histogram edge detection technique was used to estimate the bone mass density in ovariectomized rats treated orally with germinated brown rice (GBR) bioactives, and the results were compared with estimated results obtained using Archimede’s principle. New bone cell proliferation was assessed by histology and immunohistochemical reaction using polyclonal nuclear antigen. Additionally, serum alkaline phosphatase activity, serum and bone calcium and zinc concentrations were detected using a chemistry analyzer and atomic absorption spectroscopy. Rats were divided into groups of six as follows: sham (nonovariectomized, nontreated); ovariectomized, nontreated; and ovariectomized and treated with estrogen, or Remifemin®, GBR-phenolics, acylated steryl glucosides, gamma oryzanol, and gamma amino-butyric acid extracted from GBR at different doses.
Our results indicate a significant increase in alkaline phosphatase activity, serum and bone calcium, and zinc and ash content in the treated groups compared with the ovariectomized nontreated group (P < 0.05). Bone density increased significantly (P < 0.05) in groups treated with estrogen, GBR, Remifemin®, and gamma oryzanol compared to the ovariectomized nontreated group. Histological sections revealed more osteoblasts in the treated groups when compared with the untreated groups. A polyclonal nuclear antigen reaction showing proliferating new cells was observed in groups treated with estrogen, Remifemin®, GBR, acylated steryl glucosides, and gamma oryzanol. There was a good correlation between bone mass densities estimated using Archimede’s principle and the edge detection technique between the treated groups (r2 = 0.737, P = 0.004).
Our study shows that GBR bioactives increase bone density, which might be via the activation of zinc formation and increased calcium content, and that X-ray edge detection technique is effective in the measurement of bone density and can be employed effectively in this respect.
PMCID: PMC3810202  PMID: 24187491
Archimede’s principle; atomic absorption spectrophotometry; X-ray edge detection technique; bone mass density; germinated brown rice bioactives
14.  Upregulation of genes related to bone formation by γ-amino butyric acid and γ-oryzanol in germinated brown rice is via the activation of GABAB-receptors and reduction of serum IL-6 in rats 
Osteoporosis and other bone degenerative diseases are among the most challenging non-communicable diseases to treat. Previous works relate bone loss due to osteoporosis with oxidative stress generated by free radicals and inflammatory cytokines. Alternative therapy to hormone replacement has been an area of interest to researchers for almost three decades due to hormone therapy-associated side effects.
In this study, we investigated the effects of gamma-amino butyric acid (GABA), gamma-oryzanol (ORZ), acylated steryl glucosides (ASG), and phenolic extracts from germinated brown rice (GBR) on the expression of genes related to bone metabolism, such as bone morphogenic protein-2 (BMP-2), secreted protein acidic and rich in cysteine (SPARC), runt-related transcription factor 2 (RUNX-2), osteoblast-specific transcription factor osterix (Osx), periostin, osteoblast specific factor (Postn), collagen 1&2 (Col1&2), calcitonin receptor gene (CGRP); body weight measurement and also serum interleukin-6 (IL-6) and osteocalcin, in serum and bone. Rats were treated with GBR, ORZ, GABA, and ASG at (100 and 200 mg/kg); estrogen (0.2 mg/kg), or remifemin (10 and 20 mg/kg), compared to ovariectomized non-treated group as well as non-ovariectomized non-treated (sham) group. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was used to measure the IL-6 and osteocalcin levels at week 2, 4, and 8, while the gene expression in the bone tissue was determined using the Genetic Analysis System (Beckman Coulter Inc., Brea, CA, USA).
The results indicate that groups treated with GABA (100 and 200 mg/kg) showed significant upregulation of SPARC, calcitonin receptor, and BMP-2 genes (P < 0.05), while the ORZ-treated group (100 and 200 mg/kg) revealed significant (P < 0.05) upregulation of Osx, Postn, RUNX-2, and Col1&2. Similarly, IL-6 concentration decreased, while osteocalcin levels increased significantly (P < 0.05) in the treated groups as compared to ovariectomized non-treated groups.
GABA and ORZ from GBR stimulates osteoblastogenesis by upregulation of bone formation genes, possibly via the activation of GABAB receptors and by inhibiting the activity of inflammatory cytokines and reactive oxygen species. Therefore, it could be used effectively in the management of osteoporosis.
PMCID: PMC3789840  PMID: 24098073
gene expression; GBR-bioactive compounds; osteocalcin; ovariectomized rats
15.  Serum antibody response to recombinant major inner capsid protein following human infection with group B rotavirus. 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  1994;32(6):1599-1603.
Recombinant major inner capsid protein (VP6) of the IDIR strain of group B rotavirus (GBR) was incorporated in a solid-phase immunoassay to access antibody response to infection in humans. Expression of VP6 in insect cells permitted design of a highly sensitive assay that avoided the contaminants present in GBR antigens obtained from fecal specimens. Among patients infected with the ADRV strain of GBR in China, increased reactivity with recombinant VP6 was observed in convalescent-phase sera in comparison with sera obtained shortly after infection (P = 0.0084). Anti-VP6 antibodies were detectable as soon as 7 days after onset of gastrointestinal symptoms, and serum reactivity persisted in specimens drawn more than 1 year after infection. Solid-phase immunoassay with recombinant VP6 was next employed in order to assess anti-GBR antibody in 513 serum specimens obtained from 423 Maryland residents (ages, 7 months to 96 years; median age, 42 years). Four individuals (< 1%) exhibited serum antibodies directed against the recombinant VP6 (ages, 54 to 95 years; mean age, 77 years). Examination of 129 additional serum specimens including some from other geographic regions of the United States failed to reveal the presence of anti-GBR antibody. Anti-GBR antibody was also not detected in any of 131 serum specimens from 60 staff and residents of a nursing home in Switzerland. While infection of humans with GBR has been uncommon in these locations outside of China, the detection of serum antibodies in older individuals in the United States either indicated an unknown, age-related risk factor or may have indicated infection in the more distant past. The availability of these reagents should allow surveys for GBR infection among additional populations that have not previously been investigated.
PMCID: PMC264049  PMID: 8077413
16.  Neuroprotection against neuroblastoma cell death induced by depletion of mitochondrial glutathione 
Mitochondrial glutathione pool is vital in protecting cells against oxidative stress as the majority of the cellular reactive oxygen species are generated in mitochondria. Oxidative stress is implicated as a causative factor in neuronal death in neurodegenerative disorders. We hypothesized that depletion of mitochondrial glutathione leads to mitochondrial dysfunction and apoptotic death of SK-N-SH (human neuroblastoma) cells and investigated the neuroprotective strategies against GSH depletion. SK-N-SH cells were treated with two distinct inhibitors of glutathione metabolism: L-buthionine-(S, R)-sulfoximine (BSO) and ethacrynic acid (EA). EA treatment caused depletion of both the total and mitochondrial glutathione (while BSO had no effect on mitochondrial glutathione), enhanced rotenone-induced ROS production, and reduced the viability of SK-N-SH cells. Glutathione depletion by BSO or EA demonstrated positive features of mitochondria-mediated apoptosis in neuroblastoma cell death. Prevention of apoptosis by Bcl2 overexpression or use of antioxidant ebselen did not confer neuroprotection. Co-culture with U-87 (human glioblastoma) cells protected SK-N-SH cells from the cell death. Our data suggest that depletion of mitochondrial glutathione leads to mitochondrial dysfunction and apoptosis. The study indicates that preventing mitochondrial glutathione depletion could become a novel strategy for the development of neuroprotective therapeutics in neurodegenerative disorders.
PMCID: PMC3645366  PMID: 23494481
Glutathione; glutathione depletion; mitochondrial glutathione; apoptosis; oxidative stress; neuroprotection
17.  The cell death factor, cell wall elicitor of rice blast fungus (Magnaporthe grisea) causes metabolic alterations including GABA shunt in rice cultured cells 
Plant Signaling & Behavior  2008;3(11):945-953.
An elicitor derived from the cell wall of rice blast fungus (Magnaporthe grisea) causes cell death in suspension cultured cells of rice (Oryza sativa L.). To elucidate the role of M. grisea elicitor on metabolic pathway of rice cells, we performed metabolite profiling using capillary electrophoresis-mass spectrometry (CE/MS). Treatment with M. grisea elicitor increased the amounts of antioxidants and free amino acids and decreased the amount of metabolites in the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle. Lower ATP concentration caused aberrant energy charge, concurrently with reduced amount of NAD(P)H in elicitor treated cells. Among free amino acids detected in this study, the level of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) increased. GABA is metabolized through a bypass pathway of the TCA cycle called GABA shunt, which is composed of glutamate decarboxylase (GAD), GABA transaminase (GABA-T) and succinic semialdehyde dehydrogenase (SSADH). While M. grisea elicitor negligibly affected GAD and SSADH, GABA-T activity significantly decreased. The decrease in GABA-T activity was recovered by NADPH oxidase inhibitor, which prevents cell death induced by M. grisea elicitor. Thus, GABA accumulation observed in rice cells under elicitor stress is partly associated with GABA-T activity.
PMCID: PMC2633740  PMID: 19513197
metabolome; Magnaporthe grisea; capillary electrophoresis; mass spectrometry; gamma-aminobutyric acid; GABA transaminase; Oryza sativa
18.  Peroxiredoxin Tsa1 Is the Key Peroxidase Suppressing Genome Instability and Protecting against Cell Death in Saccharomyces cerevisiae 
PLoS Genetics  2009;5(6):e1000524.
Peroxiredoxins (Prxs) constitute a family of thiol-specific peroxidases that utilize cysteine (Cys) as the primary site of oxidation during the reduction of peroxides. To gain more insight into the physiological role of the five Prxs in budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we performed a comparative study and found that Tsa1 was distinguished from the other Prxs in that by itself it played a key role in maintaining genome stability and in sustaining aerobic viability of rad51 mutants that are deficient in recombinational repair. Tsa2 and Dot5 played minor but distinct roles in suppressing the accumulation of mutations in cooperation with Tsa1. Tsa2 was capable of largely complementing the absence of Tsa1 when expressed under the control of the Tsa1 promoter. The presence of peroxidatic cysteine (Cys47) was essential for Tsa1 activity, while Tsa1C170S lacking the resolving Cys was partially functional. In the absence of Tsa1 activity (tsa1 or tsa1CCS lacking the peroxidatic and resolving Cys) and recombinational repair (rad51), dying cells displayed irregular cell size/shape, abnormal cell cycle progression, and significant increase of phosphatidylserine externalization, an early marker of apoptosis-like cell death. The tsa1CCS rad51– or tsa1 rad51–induced cell death did not depend on the caspase Yca1 and Ste20 kinase, while the absence of the checkpoint protein Rad9 accelerated the cell death processes. These results indicate that the peroxiredoxin Tsa1, in cooperation with appropriate DNA repair and checkpoint mechanisms, acts to protect S. cerevisiae cells against toxic levels of DNA damage that occur during aerobic growth.
Author Summary
Aerobically growing cells are continuously challenged by potent oxidants produced during normal cellular metabolism. These oxidants, including hydrogen peroxide and organic peroxides, are important components mediating various cell functions. However, they can also cause cell damage when present at toxic levels. Aerobic organisms possess extensive antioxidant systems to regulate oxidant levels. Among these, peroxiredoxins have received considerable attention in recent years as an expanding protein family involved in the enzymatic degradation of hydrogen peroxide and organic peroxides. To better understand the physiological role of the five peroxiredoxins in budding yeast S. cerevisiae, we performed a comparative study and found that one, Tsa1, played a key role in preventing DNA damage and assuring genome stability. Tsa1 also cooperated with other peroxiredoxins in antioxidant defense. These functions of Tsa1 required the presence of a cysteine at the catalytic site of this enzyme. Additional studies revealed that Tsa1 activity, in cooperation with appropriate DNA repair and checkpoint mechanisms, acts to protect cells against toxic levels of DNA damage that occur during aerobic growth.
PMCID: PMC2688748  PMID: 19543365
19.  Processing Conditions, Rice Properties, Health and Environment 
Rice is the staple food for nearly two-thirds of the world’s population. Food components and environmental load of rice depends on the rice form that is resulted by different processing conditions. Brown rice (BR), germinated brown rice (GBR) and partially-milled rice (PMR) contains more health beneficial food components compared to the well milled rice (WMR). Although the arsenic concentration in cooked rice depends on the cooking methods, parboiled rice (PBR) seems to be relatively prone to arsenic contamination compared to that of untreated rice, if contaminated water is used for parboiling and cooking. A change in consumption patterns from PBR to untreated rice (non-parboiled), and WMR to PMR or BR may conserve about 43–54 million tons of rice and reduce the risk from arsenic contamination in the arsenic prone area. This study also reveals that a change in rice consumption patterns not only supply more food components but also reduces environmental loads. A switch in production and consumption patterns would improve food security where food grains are scarce, and provide more health beneficial food components, may prevent some diseases and ease the burden on the Earth. However, motivation and awareness of the environment and health, and even a nominal incentive may require for a method switching which may help in building a sustainable society.
PMCID: PMC3138007  PMID: 21776212
rice processing; rice properties; CO2 emission; health; environment
20.  Lobeline shows protective effects against MPTP-induced dopaminergic neuron death and attenuates behavior deficits in animals 
We previously demonstrated that lobeline effectively inhibited dopamine transporter (DAT)-mediated dopamine (DA) transportation. Therefore, the present study aimed to investigate whether lobeline shows protective effects against neurotoxin-induced cell death in vivo. Mice were administered 30 mg/kg 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetra-hydropyridine (MPTP) and treated with 80 mg/kg L-dopa, 10 mg/kg GBR12935 or 1 or 3 mg/kg lobeline, respectively, via injection. Rotarod and swim tests as well as tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) immunohistochemistry were carried out to evaluate the effects of these drugs. Compared with L-DA and GBR12935, lobeline (3 mg/kg administered via intraperitoneal injection) on behavior and dopaminergic neurons. Compared with L-DA and GBR12935, lobeline (3 mg/kg injected subcutaneously) significantly reduced MPTP induced locomotive deficits detected in behavioral tests. In addition, TH immunostaining showed that lobeline (3 mg/kg) markedly decreased the neurotoxin-induced immunoreactivity loss in the substantia nigra and striatum. Lobeline may be useful in the protection of dopaminergic neurons and may alleviate the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
PMCID: PMC3881066  PMID: 24396408
lobeline; 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetra-hydropyridine; dopamine transporter; substantia nigra; Parkinson’s disease
21.  Transgenic Overexpression of Peroxiredoxin-2 Attenuates Ischemic Neuronal Injury Via Suppression of a Redox-Sensitive Pro-Death Signaling Pathway 
Antioxidants & Redox Signaling  2012;17(5):719-732.
Aims: Peroxiredoxins (PRXs) are a newly characterized family of peroxide scavenging enzymes that not only help maintain cellular redox homeostasis but also may directly engage in a variety of intracellular signaling pathways. PRX2 is a neuronal-specific PRX believed to participate in cerebral antioxidant responses in several neurodegenerative diseases. This study investigates the potential neuroprotective effect and the underlying mechanism of PRX2 in models of ischemic neuronal injury. Results: Transgenic mice overexpressing PRX2 showed reduced brain injury and improved neurological recovery up to 3 weeks after transient focal cerebral ischemia compared to wild-type littermates. In primary cultures of cortical neurons, transfection of PRX2 but not the loss-of-catalytic-site PRX2 mutant conferred neuroprotection against cell death induced by oxygen glucose deprivation. PRX2 exhibited potent pro-survival effects in ischemic neurons by maintaining thioredoxin (Trx) in its reduced state, thereby preventing oxidative stress-mediated activation of apoptosis signal–regulating kinase 1 (ASK1) and the downstream MKK/JNK pro-death signaling pathway. PRX2 failed to provide additional neuroprotection against ischemic injury in Trx- or ASK1-knockdown neuron cultures and in mice treated with a JNK inhibitor. Innovation: This study provides evidence that neuronal overexpression of PRX2 confers prolonged neuroprotection against ischemic/reperfusion brain injury. Moreover, the results suggest a signaling pathway by which PRX2 suppresses ischemia-induced neuronal apoptosis. Conclusions: Enhanced neuronal expression and activity of PRX2 protect against ischemic neuronal injury by directly modulating the redox-sensitive Trx-ASK1 signaling complex. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 17, 719–732.
PMCID: PMC3387778  PMID: 22356734
22.  Differential Effects of Methyl-4-Phenylpyridinium Ion, Rotenone, and Paraquat on Differentiated SH-SY5Y Cells 
Journal of Toxicology  2013;2013:347312.
Paraquat (PQ), a cationic nonselective bipyridyl herbicide, has been used as neurotoxicant to modulate Parkinson's disease in laboratory settings. Other compounds like rotenone (ROT), a pesticide, and 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium ion (MPP+) have been widely used as neurotoxicants. We compared the toxicity of these three neurotoxicants using differentiated dopaminergic SH-SY5Y human cells, aiming to elucidate their differential effects. PQ-induced neurotoxicity was shown to be concentration and time dependent, being mitochondrial dysfunction followed by neuronal death. On the other hand, cells exposure to MPP+ induced mitochondrial dysfunction, but not cellular lyses. Meanwhile, ROT promoted both mitochondrial dysfunction and neuronal death, revealing a biphasic pattern. To further elucidate PQ neurotoxic mechanism, several protective agents were used. SH-SY5Y cells pretreatment with tiron (TIR) and 2-hydroxybenzoic acid sodium salt (NaSAL), both antioxidants, and Nω-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester hydrochloride (L-NAME), a nitric oxide synthase inhibitor, partially protected against PQ-induced cell injury. Additionally, 1-(2-[bis(4-fluorophenyl)methoxy]ethyl)-4-(3-phenyl-propyl)piperazine (GBR 12909), a dopamine transporter inhibitor, and cycloheximide (CHX), a protein synthesis inhibitor, also partially protected against PQ-induced cell injury. In conclusion, we demonstrated that PQ, MPP+, and ROT exerted differential toxic effects on dopaminergic cells. PQ neurotoxicity occurred through exacerbated oxidative stress, with involvement of uptake through the dopamine transporter and protein synthesis.
PMCID: PMC3654346  PMID: 23710172
23.  Oligomeric proanthocyanidin protects retinal ganglion cells against oxidative stress-induced apoptosis 
Neural Regeneration Research  2013;8(25):2317-2326.
The death of retinal ganglion cells is a hallmark of many optic neurodegenerative diseases such as glaucoma and retinopathy. Oxidative stress is one of the major reasons to cause the cell death. Oligomeric proanthocyanidin has many health beneficial effects including antioxidative and neuroprotective actions. Here we tested whether oligomeric proanthocyanidin may protect retinal ganglion cells against oxidative stress induced-apoptosis in vitro. Retinal ganglion cells were treated with hydrogen peroxide with or without oligomeric proanthocyanidin. 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay showed that treating retinal ganglion cell line RGC-5 cells with 20 μmol/L oligomeric proanthocyanidin significantly decreased the hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) induced death. Results of flow cytometry and Hoechst staining demonstrated that the death of RGC-5 cells was mainly caused by cell apoptosis. We further found that expression of pro-apoptotic Bax and caspase-3 were significantly decreased while anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 was greatly increased in H2O2 damaged RGC-5 cells with oligomeric proanthocyanidin by western blot assay. Furthermore, in retinal explant culture, the number of surviving retinal ganglion cells in H2O2-damaged retinal ganglion cells with oligomeric proanthocyanidin was significantly increased. Our studies thus demonstrate that oligomeric proanthocyanidin can protect oxidative stress-injured retinal ganglion cells by inhibiting apoptotic process.
PMCID: PMC4146041  PMID: 25206541
neural regeneration; traditional Chinese medicine; retinal ganglion cell; oligomeric proanthocyanidin; oxidative stress; hydrogen peroxide; retinal explants; apoptosis; grants-supported paper; neuroregeneration
24.  Androgens selectively protect against apoptosis in hippocampal neurones 
Journal of neuroendocrinology  2010;22(9):1013-1022.
Androgens can protect neurones from injury, but androgen neuroprotection is not well characterised in terms of either specificity or mechanism. Here, we compared the ability of androgens to protect neurones against a panel of insults, empirically determined to induce cell death by apoptotic or non-apoptotic mechanisms. Three criteria defining, but not inclusive of apoptosis are: protection by caspase inhibition, protection by protein synthesis inhibition, and presence of pyknotic nuclei. According to these criteria, β-amyloid, staurosporine, and Apoptosis Activator II induced cell death involving apoptosis, while hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), iron, calcium ionophore, and 3-nitropropionic acid induced cell death featuring non-apoptotic characteristics. Pretreatment of hippocampal neurones with testosterone or dihydrotestosterone attenuated cell death induced by β-amyloid, staurosporine, and Apoptosis Activator II, but none of the other insults. The anti-oxidant Trolox did not reduce cell death induced by β-amyloid, staurosporine, and Apoptosis Activator II, but did protect against H2O2 and iron. Similarly, a supra-physiological concentration of oestrogen reduced cell death induced by H2O2 and iron, an effect not observed with androgens. We also show that activation of oestrogen pathways was not necessary for androgen neuroprotection. These data suggest that androgens directly activate a neuroprotective mechanism specific to inhibition of cell death involving apoptosis. Determining the specificity of androgen neuroprotection may enable the development of androgen compounds for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders.
PMCID: PMC2924915  PMID: 20561156
Androgens; apoptosis; dihydrotestosterone; neuroprotection; oestrogen; testosterone
25.  GABAB Receptor Gene Transfer into the Nucleus Tractus Solitarii Induces Chronic Blood Pressure Elevation in Normotensive Rats 
Increasing evidence indicates that GABAergic neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) play a significant role in the arterial baroreceptor reflex and in the control of cardiovascular homeostasis. However, the role of these neurons in the development of hypertension is not yet fully clear.
Methods and Results
In the present study, we first confirmed that GABA B receptor (GBR) expression is enhanced in the NTS of SHR as compared with WKY rats using real time RT-PCR and Western Blots. To study the functional consequence of upregulated GBR expression, GBR was overexpressed in the NTS by bilateral microinjection of the AAV2-GBR1 viral vector into the NTS of WKY rats. Immunofluorescence staining and Western blots demonstrated that microinjection of AAV2-GBR1 into the NTS of WKY rats resulted in a significant increase in GBR1 expression in the NTS neurons. Overexpression of GBR in the NTS induced a chronic elevation in blood pressure and heart rate in the normotensive WKY rats. In an acute study, the pressor response to baclofen microinjected into the NTS was enhanced in SHR as compared with WKY rats.
GBR1 expression is enhanced in the NTS of SHR versus WKY rats and overexpression of this gene in the NTS results in chronic elevation of blood pressure and heart rate in normotensive rats.
PMCID: PMC4113594  PMID: 23803332
GABAB receptor; blood pressure; hypertension

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