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Davunetide (NAP) as a preventative treatment for central nervous system complications in a diabetes rat model.

TitleDavunetide (NAP) as a preventative treatment for central nervous system complications in a diabetes rat model.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsIdan-Feldman, A., Schirer Y., Polyzoidou E., Touloumi O., Lagoudaki R., Grigoriadis N. C., & Gozes I.
JournalNeurobiol Dis
Date Published2011 Dec
KeywordsAnimals, Caspase 3, Central Nervous System Diseases, Cognition Disorders, Diabetes Mellitus, Experimental, Disease Models, Animal, Lectins, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Maze Learning, Mental Disorders, Neuroprotective Agents, Oligopeptides, Phosphopyruvate Hydratase, Rats, Rats, Sprague-Dawley, Reaction Time, Social Behavior, Space Perception, Synaptophysin, Time Factors

AIMS: Central nervous system complications including cognitive impairment are an early manifestation of diabetes mellitus, also evident in animal models. NAP (generic name, davunetide), a neuroprotective peptide was tested here for its ability to prevent diabetes-related brain pathologies in the streptozotocin injected diabetes rat model.
METHODS: Diabetes was induced by an intraperitoneal streptozotocin injection (55 mg/kg). Intranasal NAP or vehicle was administered daily starting on the day following streptozotocin injection. Cognitive assessment was performed 12 weeks after diabetes induction, using the Morris water maze paradigm. Brain structural integrity was assessed on the 15th week of diabetes by magnetic resonance T2 scan. Characterization of cellular populations, apoptosis and synaptic density was performed 16 weeks after diabetes induction, using immunohistochemical markers and quantified in the prefrontal cortex, the cerebral cortex and the hippocampus of both hemispheres.
RESULTS: Impaired spatial memory of the diabetic rats was observed in the water maze by attenuated learning curve and worsened performance in the probe memory test. NAP treatment significantly improved both measurements. T2 magnetic resonance imaging revealed atrophy in the prefrontal cortex of the diabetes rat group, which was prevented by NAP treatment. Immunohistochemical analysis showed that NAP treatment protected against major loss of the synaptic marker synaptophysin and astrocytic apoptosis, resulting from streptozotocin treatment.
CONCLUSIONS: Our results show for the first time protective effects for NAP (davuentide) in a diabetes rat model at the behavioral and structural levels against one of the most severe complications of diabetes.

Alternate JournalNeurobiol. Dis.
PubMed ID21827858


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