Special Issue "Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications"

A special issue of Pharmaceuticals (ISSN 1424-8247).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2017)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Antoni Camins Espuny

Unidad de Farmacología, Facultad de Farmacia Diagonal 643, E-08028 Barcelona, Spain
Website 1 | Website 2 | E-Mail
Interests: Alzheimer's disease; aging; apoptosis; neuropharmacology; epilepsy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The increasing prevalence of epilepsy and neurodegenerative disorders is a matter of global concern. Whereas epilepsy is a severe brain disorder that affects around 50 million people worldwide, neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease (PD) and especially Alzheimer’s disease (AD) are increasing in parallel to the aging of the population in developed countries. Although current treatments with antiepileptic drugs can be effective in the control of the symptoms, one of the major problems in epilepsy treatment is the loss of drug response. The precise causes of this phenomenon, known as “refractory epilepsy”, remain to be elucidated, although a number of studies are working on this area. On another front, the currently available treatments for neurodegenerative diseases are only palliative. Therefore, the study of new synthetic and natural products, as well as alternative strategies, is of paramount importance in order to find a cure to these disorders.

Prof. Dr. Antoni Camins Espuny
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • Epilepsy
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Parkinson’s
  • Neurological disorders

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Published Papers (13 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Altered Proteins in the Hippocampus of Patients with Mesial Temporal Lobe Epilepsy
Pharmaceuticals 2018, 11(4), 95; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph11040095
Received: 22 August 2018 / Revised: 18 September 2018 / Accepted: 26 September 2018 / Published: 30 September 2018
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Abstract
Mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (MTLE) is usually associated with drug-resistant seizures and cognitive deficits. Efforts have been made to improve the understanding of the pathophysiology of MTLE for new therapies. In this study, we used proteomics to determine the differential expression of proteins [...] Read more.
Mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (MTLE) is usually associated with drug-resistant seizures and cognitive deficits. Efforts have been made to improve the understanding of the pathophysiology of MTLE for new therapies. In this study, we used proteomics to determine the differential expression of proteins in the hippocampus of patients with MTLE compared to control samples. By using the two-dimensional electrophoresis method (2-DE), the proteins were separated into spots and analyzed by LC-MS/MS. Spots that had different densitometric values for patients and controls were selected for the study. The following proteins were found to be up-regulated in patients: isoform 1 of serum albumin (ALB), proton ATPase catalytic subunit A (ATP6V1A), heat shock protein 70 (HSP70), dihydropyrimidinase-related protein 2 (DPYSL2), isoform 1 of myelin basic protein (MBP), and dihydrolipoamide S-acethyltransferase (DLAT). The protein isoform 3 of the spectrin alpha chain (SPTAN1) was down-regulated while glutathione S-transferase P (GSTP1) and protein DJ-1 (PARK7) were found only in the hippocampus of patients with MTLE. Interactome analysis of the nine proteins of interest revealed interactions with 20 other proteins, most of them involved with metabolic processes (37%), presenting catalytic activity (37%) and working as hydrolyses (25%), among others. Our results provide evidence supporting a direct link between synaptic plasticity, metabolic disturbance, oxidative stress with mitochondrial damage, the disruption of the blood–brain barrier and changes in CNS structural proteins with cell death and epileptogenesis in MTLE. Besides this, the presence of markers of cell survival indicated a compensatory mechanism. The over-expression of GSTP1 in MTLE could be related to drug-resistance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessArticle Pilocarpine-Induced Status Epilepticus Is Associated with P-Glycoprotein Induction in Cardiomyocytes, Electrocardiographic Changes, and Sudden Death
Pharmaceuticals 2018, 11(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph11010021
Received: 21 January 2018 / Revised: 7 February 2018 / Accepted: 13 February 2018 / Published: 16 February 2018
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Abstract
Sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP) is the major cause of death in those patients suffering from refractory epilepsy (RE), with a 24-fold higher risk relative to the normal population. SUDEP risk increases with seizure frequency and/or seizure-duration as in RE and Status [...] Read more.
Sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP) is the major cause of death in those patients suffering from refractory epilepsy (RE), with a 24-fold higher risk relative to the normal population. SUDEP risk increases with seizure frequency and/or seizure-duration as in RE and Status Epilepticus (SE). P-glycoprotein (P-gp), the product of the multidrug resistant ABCB1-MDR-1 gene, is a detoxifying pump that extrudes drugs out of the cells and can confer pharmacoresistance to the expressing cells. Neurons and cardiomyocytes normally do not express P-gp, however, it is overexpressed in the brain of patients or in experimental models of RE and SE. P-gp was also detected after brain or cardiac hypoxia. We have previously demonstrated that repetitive pentylenetetrazole (PTZ)-induced seizures increase P-gp expression in the brain, which is associated with membrane depolarization in the hippocampus, and in the heart, which is associated with fatal SE. SE can produce hypoxic-ischemic altered cardiac rhythm (HIACR) and severe arrhythmias, and both are related with SUDEP. Here, we investigate whether SE induces the expression of hypoxia-inducible transcription factor (HIF)-1α and P-gp in cardiomyocytes, which is associated with altered heart rhythm, and if these changes are related with the spontaneous death rate. SE was induced in Wistar rats once a week for 3 weeks, by lithium-pilocarpine-paradigm. Electrocardiograms, HIF-1α, and P-gp expression in cardiomyocytes, were evaluated in basal conditions and 72 h after SE. All spontaneous deaths occurred 48 h after each SE was registered. We observed that repeated SE induced HIF-1α and P-gp expression in cardiomyocytes, electrocardiographic (ECG) changes, and a high rate of spontaneous death. Our results suggest that the highly accumulated burden of convulsive stress results in a hypoxic heart insult, where P-gp expression may play a depolarizing role in cardiomyocyte membranes and in the development of the ECG changes, such as QT interval prolongation, that could be related with SUDEP. We postulate that this mechanism could explain, in part, the higher SUDEP risk in patients with RE or SE. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessArticle Early Gabapentin Treatment during the Latency Period Increases Convulsive Threshold, Reduces Microglial Activation and Macrophage Infiltration in the Lithium-Pilocarpine Model of Epilepsy
Pharmaceuticals 2017, 10(4), 93; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph10040093
Received: 31 October 2017 / Revised: 14 November 2017 / Accepted: 19 November 2017 / Published: 28 November 2017
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Abstract
The lithium-pilocarpine model of epilepsy reproduces several features of temporal lobe epilepsy in humans, including the chronological timeline of an initial latency period followed by the development of spontaneous seizures. Epilepsy therapies in humans are implemented, as a rule, after the onset of [...] Read more.
The lithium-pilocarpine model of epilepsy reproduces several features of temporal lobe epilepsy in humans, including the chronological timeline of an initial latency period followed by the development of spontaneous seizures. Epilepsy therapies in humans are implemented, as a rule, after the onset of the spontaneous seizures. We here studied the potential effect on epileptogenesis of starting an early treatment during the latency period, in order to prevent the development of spontaneous seizures. Adult male Wistar rats were treated with 3 mEq/kg LiCl, and 20 h later 30 mg/kg pilocarpine. Once status epilepticus (SE) was achieved, it was allowed to last for 20 min, and then motor seizures were controlled with the administration of 20 mg/kg diazepam. At 1DPSE (DPSE, days post-status epilepticus), animals started to receive 400 mg/kg/day gabapentin or saline for 4 days. At 5DPSE, we observed that SE induced an early profuse microglial and astroglial reactivity, increased synaptogenic trombospondin-1 expression and reduced AQP4 expression in astroglial ending feet. Blood brain barrier (BBB) integrity seemed to be compromised, as infiltrating NG2+ macrophages and facilitated access to the CNS was observed by transplanting eGFP+ blood cells and bone marrow-derived progenitors in the SE animals. The early 4-day gabapentin treatment successfully reduced microglial cell reactivity and blood-borne cell infiltration, without significantly altering the mRNA of proinflammatory cytokines IL-1β and TNFα immediately after the treatment. After 21DSPE, another group of animals that developed SE and received 4 days of gabapentin treatment, were re-exposed to subconvulsive accumulative doses of pilocarpine (10 mg/kg/30 min) and were followed by recording the Racine scale reached. Early 4-day gabapentin treatment reduced the Racine scale reached by the animals, reduced animal mortality, and reduced the number of animals that achieved SE (34% vs. 72%). We conclude that early gabapentin treatment following SE, during the latency period, is able to reduce neuroinflammation and produces a persistent effect that limits seizures and increases convulsive threshold, probably by restricting microglial reactivity and spurious synaptogenesis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessArticle Neurochemical Changes and c-Fos Mapping in the Brain after Carisbamate Treatment of Rats Subjected to Lithium–Pilocarpine-Induced Status Epilepticus
Pharmaceuticals 2017, 10(4), 85; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph10040085
Received: 15 September 2017 / Revised: 20 October 2017 / Accepted: 27 October 2017 / Published: 1 November 2017
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Abstract
The administration of lithium–pilocarpine (LiPilo) in adult rats is a validated model reproducing the main clinical and neuropathological features of temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). Previous studies have shown that carisbamate (CRS) has the property of modifying epileptogenesis in this model. When treated with [...] Read more.
The administration of lithium–pilocarpine (LiPilo) in adult rats is a validated model reproducing the main clinical and neuropathological features of temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). Previous studies have shown that carisbamate (CRS) has the property of modifying epileptogenesis in this model. When treated with CRS, about 50% of rats undergoing LiPilo status epilepticus (SE) develop non-convulsive seizures (NCS) instead of convulsive ones (commonly observed in TLE). The goal of this work was to determine some of the early changes that occur after CRS administration, as they could be involved in the insult- and epileptogenesis-modifying effects of CRS. Thus, we performed high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) to quantify levels of amino acids and monoamines, and c-Fos immunohistochemical labeling to map cerebral activation during seizures. Comparing rats treated one hour after SE onset with saline (CT), CRS, or diazepam (DZP), HPLC showed that 4 h after SE onset, dopamine (DA), norepinephrine (NE), and GABA levels were normal, whereas serotonin levels were increased. Using c-Fos labeling, we demonstrated increased activity in thalamic mediodorsal (MD) and laterodorsal (LD) nuclei in rats treated with CRS. In summary, at early times, CRS seems to modulate excitability by acting on some monoamine levels and increasing activity of MD and LD thalamic nuclei, suggesting a possible involvement of these nuclei in insult- and/or epileptogenesis-modifying effects of CRS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessArticle Electrographic Changes Accompanying Recurrent Seizures under Ketogenic Diet Treatment
Pharmaceuticals 2017, 10(4), 82; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph10040082
Received: 26 September 2017 / Revised: 17 October 2017 / Accepted: 19 October 2017 / Published: 20 October 2017
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Abstract
The ketogenic diet (KD) is increasingly used to treat epilepsy refractory to antiepileptic drugs and other neurological disorders. In animal models, the KD was found to increase the threshold to seizures induced by different convulsive stimulations. However, in models in which suprathreshold stimuli [...] Read more.
The ketogenic diet (KD) is increasingly used to treat epilepsy refractory to antiepileptic drugs and other neurological disorders. In animal models, the KD was found to increase the threshold to seizures induced by different convulsive stimulations. However, in models in which suprathreshold stimuli were used, a paradoxical seizure worsening was consistently observed in KD-fed animals. To better define this phenomenon, we characterized the electrographic response to seizures induced in mice which were treated with the KD, and then corneally stimulated at 6-Hz in four different sessions. We also evaluated the electroencephalogram (EEG) in three patients in which the KD was associated with a paradoxical worsening of epileptic seizures. Although seizures were initially less severe, a remarkable prolongation of the electrographic response was observed in mice receiving the KD from the second session of 6-Hz corneal stimulation and onwards. The EEG was also markedly altered in the presence of progressive seizure aggravation observed in children treated with the KD, specifically one affected by Lennox–Gastaut syndrome and two by type I lissencephaly. These results suggest that when seizures are induced or recur because of resistance to therapeutic interventions, the KD may change the EEG by potentiating the electrographic epileptic activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessArticle Behavioral and Neurochemical Consequences of Pentylenetetrazol-Induced Kindling in Young and Middle-Aged Rats
Pharmaceuticals 2017, 10(3), 75; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph10030075
Received: 21 August 2017 / Revised: 7 September 2017 / Accepted: 9 September 2017 / Published: 13 September 2017
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Abstract
(1) Objectives: Epilepsy disorder is likely to increase with aging, leading to an increased incidence of comorbidities and mortality. In spite of that, there is a lack of information regarding this issue and little knowledge of cognitive and emotional responses in aging subjects [...] Read more.
(1) Objectives: Epilepsy disorder is likely to increase with aging, leading to an increased incidence of comorbidities and mortality. In spite of that, there is a lack of information regarding this issue and little knowledge of cognitive and emotional responses in aging subjects following epileptogenesis. We investigated whether and how aging distress epilepsy-related behavioral and biochemical outcomes are associated with cognition and emotion. (2) Methods: Young and middle-aged Wistar rats (3 or 12 months old) were treated with pentylenetetrazol (PTZ, 35 mg/kg) and injected on alternated days for 20 (young rats) and 32 days (middle-aged rats). Kindling was reached after two consecutive stages 4 plus one stage 5 or 6 in Racine scale. Control and kindled rats were evaluated in the elevated plus-maze (EPM) and object-recognition tests and their hippocampus was collected 24 h later for mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPK) dosage. (3) Results: Middle-aged rats presented a higher resistance to develop kindling, with a decrease in the seizure severity index observed following the 4th and 9th PTZ injections. Middle-aged rats displayed an increased duration of the first myoclonic seizure and an increased latency to the first generalized seizure when compared to younger rats. The induction of kindling did not impair the animals’ performance (regardless of age) in the object-recognition task and the EPM test as well as it did not alter the hippocampal levels of MAPKs. (4) Significance: Our findings reveal that, despite age-related differences during epileptogenesis, middle-aged rats evaluated after kindling performed similarly during discriminative learning and emotional tasks in comparison to young animals, with no alteration of hippocampal MAPKs. Additional investigation must be carried out to explore the electrophysiological mechanisms underlying these responses, as well as the long-term effects displayed after kindling. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessArticle Role of CYP2C9, CYP2C19 and EPHX Polymorphism in the Pharmacokinetic of Phenytoin: A Study on Uruguayan Caucasian Subjects
Pharmaceuticals 2017, 10(3), 73; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph10030073
Received: 6 July 2017 / Revised: 14 August 2017 / Accepted: 16 August 2017 / Published: 18 August 2017
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Abstract
Phenytoin (PHT) oxidative route leads to its main metabolite p-hydroxyphenytoin (p-HPPH), by means of CYP2C9 and CYP2C19. Formation of p-HPPH proceeds via a reactive arene-oxide intermediate. This intermediate can also be converted into PHT dihydrodiol by microsomal epoxide hydrolase (EPHX). The three enzymes [...] Read more.
Phenytoin (PHT) oxidative route leads to its main metabolite p-hydroxyphenytoin (p-HPPH), by means of CYP2C9 and CYP2C19. Formation of p-HPPH proceeds via a reactive arene-oxide intermediate. This intermediate can also be converted into PHT dihydrodiol by microsomal epoxide hydrolase (EPHX). The three enzymes are polymorphically expressed and the genetic variants are responsible for changes in the enzyme activity. In order to evaluate the effect that these polymorphisms have on PHT metabolism, PHT and p-HPPH plasma concentrations were measured and the genotype for the three enzymes was assessed in 50 Uruguayan epileptic patients. 30% of the patients were intermediate and 2% were poor metabolizers for CYP2C9, while 20% were intermediate metabolizers for CYP2C19. 44%, 10%, and 46% of subjects had intermediate, increased and decreased activities of EPHX respectively. CYP2C9 was confirmed to be the main responsible enzyme for PHT biotransformation. CYP2C19 seemed to be preponderant in p-HPPH oxidative metabolism. Apart from being responsible for the production of the dihydrodiol metabolite, EPHX also seemed to contribute to pHPPH formation when its activity is low. PHT might be recovered with a decreased activity of EPHX regardless the activity of CYP2C9. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessArticle Hippocampal Proteome of Rats Subjected to the Li-Pilocarpine Epilepsy Model and the Effect of Carisbamate Treatment
Pharmaceuticals 2017, 10(3), 67; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph10030067
Received: 15 May 2017 / Revised: 26 July 2017 / Accepted: 27 July 2017 / Published: 30 July 2017
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Abstract
In adult rats, the administration of lithium–pilocarpine (LiPilo) reproduces most clinical and neuropathological features of human temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). Carisbamate (CRS) possesses the property of modifying epileptogenesis in this model. Indeed, about 50% of rats subjected to LiPilo status epilepticus (SE) develop [...] Read more.
In adult rats, the administration of lithium–pilocarpine (LiPilo) reproduces most clinical and neuropathological features of human temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE). Carisbamate (CRS) possesses the property of modifying epileptogenesis in this model. Indeed, about 50% of rats subjected to LiPilo status epilepticus (SE) develop non-convulsive seizures (NCS) instead of motor seizures when treated with CRS. However, the mechanisms underlying these effects remain unknown. The aim of this study was to perform a proteomic analysis in the hippocampus of rats receiving LiPilo and developing motor seizures or NCS following CRS treatment. Fifteen adult male Sprague–Dawley rats were used. SE was induced by LiPilo injection. CRS treatment was initiated at 1 h and 9 h after SE onset and maintained for 7 days, twice daily. Four groups were studied after video-EEG control of the occurrence of motor seizures: a control group receiving saline (CT n = 3) and three groups that underwent SE: rats treated with diazepam (DZP n = 4), rats treated with CRS displaying NCS (CRS-NCS n = 4) or motor seizures (CRS-TLE n = 4). Proteomic analysis was conducted by 2D-SDS-PAGE. Twenty-four proteins were found altered. In the CRS-NCS group, proteins related to glycolysis and ATP synthesis were down-regulated while proteins associated with pyruvate catabolism were up-regulated. Moreover, among the other proteins differentially expressed, we found proteins related to inflammatory processes, protein folding, tissue regeneration, response to oxidative stress, gene expression, biogenesis of synaptic vesicles, signal transduction, axonal transport, microtubule formation, cell survival, and neuronal plasticity. Our results suggest a global reduction of glycolysis and cellular energy production that might affect brain excitability. In addition, CRS seems to modulate proteins related to many other pathways that could significantly participate in the epileptogenesis-modifying effect observed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessArticle Neuroprotective Effects of β-Caryophyllene against Dopaminergic Neuron Injury in a Murine Model of Parkinson’s Disease Induced by MPTP
Pharmaceuticals 2017, 10(3), 60; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph10030060
Received: 14 June 2017 / Revised: 30 June 2017 / Accepted: 3 July 2017 / Published: 6 July 2017
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Abstract
Parkinson’s disease (PD) is one of the most common neurodegenerative disorders and is characterized by the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra (SN). Although the causes of PD are not understood, evidence suggests that its pathogenesis is associated with oxidative stress [...] Read more.
Parkinson’s disease (PD) is one of the most common neurodegenerative disorders and is characterized by the loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra (SN). Although the causes of PD are not understood, evidence suggests that its pathogenesis is associated with oxidative stress and inflammation. Recent studies have suggested a protective role of the cannabinoid signalling system in PD. β-caryophyllene (BCP) is a natural bicyclic sesquiterpene that is an agonist of the cannabinoid type 2 receptor (CB2R). Previous studies have suggested that BCP exerts prophylactic and/or curative effects against inflammatory bowel disease through its antioxidative and/or anti-inflammatory action. The present study describes the neuroprotective effects of BCP in a 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)-induced murine model of PD, and we report the results of our investigation of its neuroprotective mechanism in neurons and glial cells. In the murine model, BCP pretreatment ameliorated motor dysfunction, protected against dopaminergic neuronal losses in the SN and striatum, and alleviated MPTP-induced glia activation. Additionally, BCP inhibited the levels of inflammatory cytokines in the nigrostriatal system. The observed neuroprotection and inhibited glia activation were reversed upon treatment with the CB2R selective antagonist AM630, confirming the involvement of the CB2R. These results indicate that BCP acts via multiple neuroprotective mechanisms in our murine model and suggest that BCP may be viewed as a potential treatment and/or preventative agent for PD. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Review

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Open AccessFeature PaperReview Interactions Between Epilepsy and Plasticity
Pharmaceuticals 2018, 11(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph11010017
Received: 24 November 2017 / Revised: 1 February 2018 / Accepted: 6 February 2018 / Published: 7 February 2018
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Abstract
Undoubtedly, one of the most interesting topics in the field of neuroscience is the ability of the central nervous system to respond to different stimuli (normal or pathological) by modifying its structure and function, either transiently or permanently, by generating neural cells and [...] Read more.
Undoubtedly, one of the most interesting topics in the field of neuroscience is the ability of the central nervous system to respond to different stimuli (normal or pathological) by modifying its structure and function, either transiently or permanently, by generating neural cells and new connections in a process known as neuroplasticity. According to the large amount of evidence reported in the literature, many stimuli, such as environmental pressures, changes in the internal dynamic steady state of the organism and even injuries or illnesses (e.g., epilepsy) may induce neuroplasticity. Epilepsy and neuroplasticity seem to be closely related, as the two processes could positively affect one another. Thus, in this review, we analysed some neuroplastic changes triggered in the hippocampus in response to seizure-induced neuronal damage and how these changes could lead to the establishment of temporal lobe epilepsy, the most common type of focal human epilepsy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview Alpha-Secretase ADAM10 Regulation: Insights into Alzheimer’s Disease Treatment
Pharmaceuticals 2018, 11(1), 12; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph11010012
Received: 27 December 2017 / Revised: 23 January 2018 / Accepted: 23 January 2018 / Published: 29 January 2018
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Abstract
ADAM (a disintegrin and metalloproteinase) is a family of widely expressed, transmembrane and secreted proteins of approximately 750 amino acids in length with functions in cell adhesion and proteolytic processing of the ectodomains of diverse cell-surface receptors and signaling molecules. ADAM10 is the [...] Read more.
ADAM (a disintegrin and metalloproteinase) is a family of widely expressed, transmembrane and secreted proteins of approximately 750 amino acids in length with functions in cell adhesion and proteolytic processing of the ectodomains of diverse cell-surface receptors and signaling molecules. ADAM10 is the main α-secretase that cleaves APP (amyloid precursor protein) in the non-amyloidogenic pathway inhibiting the formation of β-amyloid peptide, whose accumulation and aggregation leads to neuronal degeneration in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). ADAM10 is a membrane-anchored metalloprotease that sheds, besides APP, the ectodomain of a large variety of cell-surface proteins including cytokines, adhesion molecules and notch. APP cleavage by ADAM10 results in the production of an APP-derived fragment, sAPPα, which is neuroprotective. As increased ADAM10 activity protects the brain from β-amyloid deposition in AD, this strategy has been proved to be effective in treating neurodegenerative diseases, including AD. Here, we describe the physiological mechanisms regulating ADAM10 expression at different levels, aiming to propose strategies for AD treatment. We report in this review on the physiological regulation of ADAM10 at the transcriptional level, by epigenetic factors, miRNAs and/or translational and post-translational levels. In addition, we describe the conditions that can change ADAM10 expression in vitro and in vivo, and discuss how this knowledge may help in AD treatment. Regulation of ADAM10 is achieved by multiple mechanisms that include transcriptional, translational and post-translational strategies, which we will summarize in this review. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessReview The Implication of the Brain Insulin Receptor in Late Onset Alzheimer’s Disease Dementia
Pharmaceuticals 2018, 11(1), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph11010011
Received: 29 December 2017 / Revised: 24 January 2018 / Accepted: 25 January 2018 / Published: 29 January 2018
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Abstract
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is progressive neurodegenerative disorder characterized by brain accumulation of the amyloid β peptide (Aβ), which form senile plaques, neurofibrillary tangles (NFT) and, eventually, neurodegeneration and cognitive impairment. Interestingly, epidemiological studies have described a relationship between type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) [...] Read more.
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is progressive neurodegenerative disorder characterized by brain accumulation of the amyloid β peptide (Aβ), which form senile plaques, neurofibrillary tangles (NFT) and, eventually, neurodegeneration and cognitive impairment. Interestingly, epidemiological studies have described a relationship between type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) and this pathology, being one of the risk factors for the development of AD pathogenesis. Information as it is, it would point out that, impairment in insulin signalling and glucose metabolism, in central as well as peripheral systems, would be one of the reasons for the cognitive decline. Brain insulin resistance, also known as Type 3 diabetes, leads to the increase of Aβ production and TAU phosphorylation, mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress, protein misfolding, and cognitive impairment, which are all hallmarks of AD. Moreover, given the complexity of interlocking mechanisms found in late onset AD (LOAD) pathogenesis, more data is being obtained. Recent evidence showed that Aβ42 generated in the brain would impact negatively on the hypothalamus, accelerating the “peripheral” symptomatology of AD. In this situation, Aβ42 production would induce hypothalamic dysfunction that would favour peripheral hyperglycaemia due to down regulation of the liver insulin receptor. The objective of this review is to discuss the existing evidence supporting the concept that brain insulin resistance and altered glucose metabolism play an important role in pathogenesis of LOAD. Furthermore, we discuss AD treatment approaches targeting insulin signalling using anti-diabetic drugs and mTOR inhibitors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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Open AccessReview Orexin Receptor Multimerization versus Functional Interactions: Neuropharmacological Implications for Opioid and Cannabinoid Signalling and Pharmacogenetics
Pharmaceuticals 2017, 10(4), 79; https://doi.org/10.3390/ph10040079
Received: 28 August 2017 / Revised: 29 September 2017 / Accepted: 29 September 2017 / Published: 8 October 2017
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Abstract
Orexins/hypocretins are neuropeptides formed by proteolytic cleavage of a precursor peptide, which are produced by neurons found in the lateral hypothalamus. The G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) for these ligands, the OX1 and OX2 orexin receptors, are more widely expressed throughout the [...] Read more.
Orexins/hypocretins are neuropeptides formed by proteolytic cleavage of a precursor peptide, which are produced by neurons found in the lateral hypothalamus. The G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) for these ligands, the OX1 and OX2 orexin receptors, are more widely expressed throughout the central nervous system. The orexin/hypocretin system has been implicated in many pathways, and its dysregulation is under investigation in a number of diseases. Disorders in which orexinergic mechanisms are being investigated include narcolepsy, idiopathic sleep disorders, cluster headache and migraine. Human narcolepsy has been associated with orexin deficiency; however, it has only rarely been attributed to mutations in the gene encoding the precursor peptide. While gene variations within the canine OX2 gene hcrtr2 have been directly linked with narcolepsy, the majority of human orexin receptor variants are weakly associated with diseases (the idiopathic sleep disorders, cluster headache and polydipsia-hyponatremia in schizophrenia) or are of potential pharmacogenetic significance. Evidence for functional and/or heterodimerization between wild-type variant orexin receptors and opioid and cannabinoid receptors is discussed in the context of its relevance to depression and epilepsy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epilepsy and Neurodegeneration: Current Therapeutic Implications)
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