Sildenafil protects against 3-nitropropionic acid neurotoxicity through the modulation of calpain, CREB and BDNF
Keywords: 
3-Nitropropionic acid
BDNF
Calpain
CREB
Excitotoxicity
Huntington's disease
Phosphodiesterase 5
Sildenafil
Vardenafil
Issue Date: 
2-May-2010
Publisher: 
ACADEMIC PRESS INC ELSEVIER SCIENCE
ISSN: 
0969-9961
Citation: 
Puerta E, Hervias I, Barros-Minones L, Jordan J, Ricobaraza A, Cuadrado-Tejedor M, et al. Sildenafil protects against 3-nitropropionic acid neurotoxicity through the modulation of calpain, CREB, and BDNF.Neurobiol Dis 2010 May;38(2):237-245.
Abstract
In this study we tested whether phosphodiesterase 5 (PDE5) inhibitors, sildenafil and vardenafil, would afford protection against 3-nitropropionic acid (3NP), which produces striatal lesions that closely mimic some of the neuropathological features of Huntington's Disease (HD). The neurotoxin was given over 5 days by constant systemic infusion using osmotic minipumps. Animals treated with PDE5 inhibitors (sildenafil or vardenafil) showed improved neurologic scores, reduced the loss of striatal DARPP-32 protein levels and lesion volumes, and decreased calpain activation produced by 3NP. This protective effect was independent of changes in 3NP-induced succinate dehydrogenase inhibition. Furthermore, striatal p-CREB levels along with the expression of BDNF were significantly increased in sildenafil-treated rats. In summary, PDE5 inhibitors protected against 3NP-induced striatal degeneration by reducing calpain activation and by promoting survival pathways. These data encourage further evaluation of PDE5 inhibitors in transgenic mouse models of HD.

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