Special Issue "Astaxanthin: A Potential Therapeutic Agent"

A special issue of Marine Drugs (ISSN 1660-3397).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 April 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Graciela Pavon-Djavid
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
INSERM U1148, Laboratory for Vascular Translational Science, University Paris 13, France
Interests: oxidative stress; drug delivery; antioxidants

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Oxidative stress, inflammation, and apoptosis are some of the mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of several diseases such as cardiovascular pathologies, neurodegenerative disorders, diabetes, and cancer. Founding new therapeutic molecules capable of maintaining cellular redox homeostasis and blocking oxidative stress are hallenges of crucial importance.

Because of its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, astaxanthin, a xanthophyll carotenoid extracted from marine organisms and microalgae, has been proposed for repairing and protecting cells and tissues or as a nutraceutical/cosmeceutical ingredient to prevent oxidative stress-related diseases. Epidemiological studies suggest that astaxanthin prevents the free radical-dependent oxidation of LDL, cholesterol, proteins, or DNA, by capturing free radicals and by reducing stress induced by ROS.

This Special Issue aims to highlight recent research about astaxanthin’s potential as a therapeutic agent. Despite significant growing evidence suggesting that astaxanthin has a potential health-promoting effect in the prevention and treatment of several pathologies, research advances need to be reported. Original research (in vitro, in vivo, and clinical) and reviews to highlight the therapeutic potential effect of astaxanthin are encouraged to be presented in this Special Issue.

Dr. Graciela Pavon-Djavid
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Marine Drugs is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • astaxanthin
  • therapeutic agent
  • oxidative stress
  • ROS
  • antioxidant
  • clinical trials
  • animal studies
  • in vitro
  • nanotools
  • nutraceutical
  • health-promoting
  • gene expression
  • drug delivery

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessCommunication
Astaxanthin from Shrimp Cephalothorax Stimulates the Immune Response by Enhancing IFN-γ, IL-10, and IL-2 Secretion in Splenocytes of Helicobacter Pylori-Infected Mice
Mar. Drugs 2019, 17(7), 382; https://doi.org/10.3390/md17070382 - 26 Jun 2019
Abstract
Infection with Helicobacter pylori is a critical cause of gastrointestinal diseases. A crucial host response associated with H. pylori infection includes gastric inflammation, which is characterized by a sustained recruitment of T-helper (Th) cells to the site of infection and distinct patterns of [...] Read more.
Infection with Helicobacter pylori is a critical cause of gastrointestinal diseases. A crucial host response associated with H. pylori infection includes gastric inflammation, which is characterized by a sustained recruitment of T-helper (Th) cells to the site of infection and distinct patterns of cytokine production. Adequate nutritional status, especially frequent consumption of dietary antioxidants, appears to protect against infection with H. pylori. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether astaxanthin (AXT) from shrimp cephalothorax may modulate cytokine release of splenocytes in H. pylori-infected mice (n = 60). Six- to eight-week-old female mice were divided into three groups (n = 20 per group) to receive a daily oral dose of 10 or 40 mg of AXT for six weeks. After six weeks, a trend toward interferon gamma (IFN-γ) upregulation was found (40 mg; p < 0.05) and a significant dose-dependent increase of interleukin 2 (IL-2) and IL-10 (both p < 0.05) was observed. These results suggest that AXT induces higher levels of IL-2 and a shift to a balanced Th1/Th2 response by increasing IFN-γ and augmenting IL-10. We concluded that AXT may influence the pattern of cytokines during H. pylori infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Astaxanthin: A Potential Therapeutic Agent)
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Open AccessArticle
Astaxanthin Complexes to Attenuate Muscle Damage after In Vivo Femoral Ischemia-Reperfusion
Mar. Drugs 2019, 17(6), 354; https://doi.org/10.3390/md17060354 - 14 Jun 2019
Abstract
(1) Background: Reperfusion injury refers to the cell and tissue damage induced, when blood flow is restored after an ischemic period. While reperfusion reestablishes oxygen supply, it generates a high concentration of radicals, resulting in tissue dysfunction and damage. Here, we aimed to [...] Read more.
(1) Background: Reperfusion injury refers to the cell and tissue damage induced, when blood flow is restored after an ischemic period. While reperfusion reestablishes oxygen supply, it generates a high concentration of radicals, resulting in tissue dysfunction and damage. Here, we aimed to challenge and achieve the potential of a delivery system based on astaxanthin, a natural antioxidant, in attenuating the muscle damage in an animal model of femoral hind-limb ischemia and reperfusion. (2) Methods: The antioxidant capacity and non-toxicity of astaxanthin was validated before and after loading into a polysaccharide scaffold. The capacity of astaxanthin to compensate stress damages was also studied after ischemia induced by femoral artery clamping and followed by varied periods of reperfusion. (3) Results: Histological evaluation showed a positive labeling for CD68 and CD163 macrophage markers, indicating a remodeling process. In addition, higher levels of Nrf2 and NQO1 expression in the sham group compared to the antioxidant group could reflect a reduction of the oxidative damage after 15 days of reperfusion. Furthermore, non-significant differences were observed in non-heme iron deposition in both groups, reflecting a cell population susceptible to free radical damage. (4) Conclusions: Our results suggest that the in situ release of an antioxidant molecule could be effective in improving the antioxidant defenses of ischemia/reperfusion (I/R)-damaged muscles. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Astaxanthin: A Potential Therapeutic Agent)
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Open AccessArticle
Xanthophyllomyces dendrorhous-Derived Astaxanthin Regulates Lipid Metabolism and Gut Microbiota in Obese Mice Induced by A High-Fat Diet
Mar. Drugs 2019, 17(6), 337; https://doi.org/10.3390/md17060337 - 05 Jun 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Astaxanthin is an important antioxidant with many biological activities such as anti-tumor, anti-obesity, cardioprotective, and immuno-modulatory activities. Most of these biological activities are derived from (3S,3′S)-astaxanthin, while the activities of (3R,3′R)-astaxanthin are rarely reported. The purpose of this study was to investigate the [...] Read more.
Astaxanthin is an important antioxidant with many biological activities such as anti-tumor, anti-obesity, cardioprotective, and immuno-modulatory activities. Most of these biological activities are derived from (3S,3′S)-astaxanthin, while the activities of (3R,3′R)-astaxanthin are rarely reported. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of (3R,3′R)-astaxanthin on lipid metabolism and gut microbiota in mice fed with a high-fat diet. In this work, 40 male C57BL/6 mice were divided into 8 groups fed a high-fat diet supplemented or not with (3R,3′R)-astaxanthin or Xanthophyllomyces dendrorhous for 8 weeks. The weight gain, energy intake, fat index, plasma triacylglycerol and cholesterol, liver triacylglycerol and cholesterol, and gut microbiota were determined. The results showed that the addition of (3R,3′R)-astaxanthin/X. dendrorhous to the high-fat diet as a supplement prevented weight gain, reduced plasma and liver triacylglycerol, and decreased plasma and liver total cholesterol. The addition of (3R,3′R)-astaxanthin/X. dendrorhous also regulated the gut microbiota of the mice, which optimized the ratio of Bacteroides to Firmicutes and increased the content of Verrucomicrobia, especially Akkermansia. The changes in the gut microflora achieved a healthier structure, thus reducing the incidence of obesity. Thus (3R,3′R)-Astaxanthin has the function of regulating lipid metabolism and gut microbiota to prevent obesity caused by a high-fat diet. The production strain of (3R,3′R)-astaxanthin, X. dendrorhous, has the same function as astaxanthin in preventing obesity caused by a high-fat diet, which reflects its potential ability as a probiotic drug. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Astaxanthin: A Potential Therapeutic Agent)
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Open AccessArticle
Astaxanthin Ameliorates Lipopolysaccharide-Induced Neuroinflammation, Oxidative Stress and Memory Dysfunction through Inactivation of the Signal Transducer and Activator of Transcription 3 Pathway
Mar. Drugs 2019, 17(2), 123; https://doi.org/10.3390/md17020123 - 18 Feb 2019
Abstract
Astaxanthin (AXT), a xanthophyll carotenoid compound, has potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties. Neuroinflammation and oxidative stress are significant in the pathogenesis and development of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Here, we studied whether AXT could alleviate neuroinflammation, oxidative stress and memory loss in lipopolysaccharide [...] Read more.
Astaxanthin (AXT), a xanthophyll carotenoid compound, has potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties. Neuroinflammation and oxidative stress are significant in the pathogenesis and development of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Here, we studied whether AXT could alleviate neuroinflammation, oxidative stress and memory loss in lipopolysaccharide (LPS) administered mice model. Additionally, we investigated the anti-oxidant activity and the anti-neuroinflammatory response of AXT in LPS-treated BV-2 microglial cells. The AXT administration ameliorated LPS-induced memory loss. This effect was associated with the reduction of LPS-induced expression of inflammatory proteins, as well as the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), nitric oxide (NO), cytokines and chemokines both in vivo and in vitro. AXT also reduced LPS-induced β-secretase and Aβ1–42 generation through the down-regulation of amyloidogenic proteins both in vivo and in vitro. Furthermore, AXT suppressed the DNA binding activities of the signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3). We found that AXT directly bound to the DNA- binding domain (DBD) and linker domain (LD) domains of STAT3 using docking studies. The oxidative stress and inflammatory responses were not downregulated in BV-2 cells transfected with DBD-null STAT3 and LD-null STAT3. These results indicated AXT inhibits LPS-induced oxidant activity, neuroinflammatory response and amyloidogenesis via the blocking of STAT3 activity through direct binding. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Astaxanthin: A Potential Therapeutic Agent)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Astaxanthin Modulation of Signaling Pathways That Regulate Autophagy
Mar. Drugs 2019, 17(10), 546; https://doi.org/10.3390/md17100546 - 23 Sep 2019
Abstract
Autophagy is a lysosomal pathway that degrades and recycles unused or dysfunctional cell components as well as toxic cytosolic materials. Basal autophagy favors cell survival. However, the aberrant regulation of autophagy can promote pathological conditions. The autophagy pathway is regulated by several cell-stress [...] Read more.
Autophagy is a lysosomal pathway that degrades and recycles unused or dysfunctional cell components as well as toxic cytosolic materials. Basal autophagy favors cell survival. However, the aberrant regulation of autophagy can promote pathological conditions. The autophagy pathway is regulated by several cell-stress and cell-survival signaling pathways that can be targeted for the purpose of disease control. In experimental models of disease, the carotenoid astaxanthin has been shown to modulate autophagy by regulating signaling pathways, including the AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), cellular homolog of murine thymoma virus akt8 oncogene (Akt), and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK), such as c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) and p38. Astaxanthin is a promising therapeutic agent for the treatment of a wide variety of diseases by regulating autophagy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Astaxanthin: A Potential Therapeutic Agent)
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Open AccessReview
Astaxanthin as a Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor (PPAR) Modulator: Its Therapeutic Implications
Mar. Drugs 2019, 17(4), 242; https://doi.org/10.3390/md17040242 - 23 Apr 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) are part of the nuclear hormone receptors superfamily that plays a pivotal role in functions such as glucose and lipid homeostasis. Astaxanthin (ASX) is a lipid-soluble xanthophyll carotenoid synthesized by many microorganisms and various types of marine life that [...] Read more.
Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) are part of the nuclear hormone receptors superfamily that plays a pivotal role in functions such as glucose and lipid homeostasis. Astaxanthin (ASX) is a lipid-soluble xanthophyll carotenoid synthesized by many microorganisms and various types of marine life that is known to possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antidiabetic, anti-atherosclerotic, and anticancer activities. As such, it is a promising nutraceutical resource. ASX-mediated modulation of PPARs and its therapeutic implications in various pathophysiological conditions are described in this review. ASX primarily enhances the action of PPARα and suppresses that of PPARβ/δ and PPARγ, but it has also been confirmed that ASX displays the opposite effects on PPARs, depending on the cell context. Anti-inflammatory effects of ASX are mediated by PPARγ activation, which induces the expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines in macrophages and gastric epithelial cells. The PPARγ-agonistic effect of ASX treatment results in the inhibition of cellular growth and apoptosis in tumor cells. Simultaneous and differential regulation of PPARα and PPARγ activity by ASX has demonstrated a hepatoprotective effect, maintaining hepatic lipid homeostasis and preventing related hepatic problems. Considering additional therapeutic benefits of ASX such as anti-gastric, cardioprotective, immuno-modulatory, neuroprotective, retinoprotective, and osteogenic effects, more studies on the association between ASX-mediated PPAR regulation and its therapeutic outcomes in various pathophysiological conditions are needed to further elucidate the role of ASX as a novel nutraceutical PPAR modulator. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Astaxanthin: A Potential Therapeutic Agent)
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