Topic Review
β-Caryophyllene and Rheumatoid Arthritis
β-caryophyllene (BCP) is a cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2) agonist that tempers inflammation. An interaction between the CB2 receptor and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPAR-γ) has been suggested and PPAR-γ activation exerts anti-arthritic effects. The aim of this study was to characterize the therapeutic activity of BCP and to investigate PPAR-γ involvement in a collagen antibody induced arthritis (CAIA) experimental model. CAIA was induced through intraperitoneal injection of a monoclonal antibody cocktail and lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 50 µg/100 µL/ip). CAIA animals were then randomized to orally receive either BCP (10 mg/kg/100 µL) or its vehicle (100 µL of corn oil). BCP significantly hampered the severity of the disease, reduced relevant pro-inflammatory cytokines, and increased the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-13. BCP also decreased joint expression of matrix metalloproteinases 3 and 9. Arthritic joints showed increased COX2 and NF-kB mRNA expression and reduced expression of the PPARγ coactivator-1 alpha, PGC-1α, and PPAR-γ. These conditions were reverted following BCP treatment. Finally, BCP reduced NF-kB activation and increased PGC-1α and PPAR-γ expression in human articular chondrocytes stimulated with LPS. These effects were reverted by AM630, a CB2 receptor antagonist. These results suggest that BCP ameliorates arthritis through a cross-talk between CB2 and PPAR-γ.
  • 565
  • 03 Nov 2020
Topic Review
β-Caryophyllene
β-caryophyllene (BCP) is a cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2) agonist that tempers inflammation. An interaction between the CB2 receptor and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPAR-γ) has been suggested and PPAR-γ activation exerts anti-arthritic effects. The aim of this study was to characterize the therapeutic activity of BCP and to investigate PPAR-γ involvement in a collagen antibody induced arthritis (CAIA) experimental model. CAIA was induced through intraperitoneal injection of a monoclonal antibody cocktail and lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 50 µg/100 µL/ip). CAIA animals were then randomized to orally receive either BCP (10 mg/kg/100 µL) or its vehicle (100 µL of corn oil). BCP significantly hampered the severity of the disease, reduced relevant pro-inflammatory cytokines, and increased the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-13. BCP also decreased joint expression of matrix metalloproteinases 3 and 9. Arthritic joints showed increased COX2 and NF-kB mRNA expression and reduced expression of the PPARγ coactivator-1 alpha, PGC-1α, and PPAR-γ. These conditions were reverted following BCP treatment. Finally, BCP reduced NF-kB activation and increased PGC-1α and PPAR-γ expression in human articular chondrocytes stimulated with LPS. These effects were reverted by AM630, a CB2 receptor antagonist. These results suggest that BCP ameliorates arthritis through a cross-talk between CB2 and PPAR-γ.
  • 366
  • 01 Nov 2020
Topic Review
β-Blockers in Heart Failure
Cardiac β-receptor dysfunction in HFrEF is characterized by a reduced β1-receptor density and by the uncoupling of β1- and β2-receptors from the membrane G proteins, resulting in their functional desensitization. This mechanism is mediated by increased G protein-coupled receptor kinase 2 activity, resulting in reduced cardiac β-receptor density and reactivity, with consequent reduced cardiac inotropic reserve. In addition, catecholamines themselves are cardiotoxic, contributing to myocardial damage.
  • 187
  • 02 Sep 2021
Topic Review
α7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor and Neuroinflammation
α7 is a Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChRs) that is composed of five identical α7 subunites.Those receptors are widely expressed in or on various cell types and have diverse functions. In immune cells nAChRs regulate proliferation, differentiation and cytokine release. Specifically, activation of the α7 nAChR reduces inflammation as part of the cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway.
  • 154
  • 28 Dec 2021
Topic Review
α1-Antitrypsin Deficiency and SARS-CoV-2 Infection
The most common hereditary disorder in adults, α1-antitrypsin deficiency (AATD), is characterized by reduced plasma levels or the abnormal functioning of α1-antitrypsin (AAT), a major human blood serine protease inhibitor, which is encoded by the SERine Protein INhibitor-A1 (SERPINA1) gene and produced in the liver. Recently, it has been hypothesized that the geographic differences in COVID-19 infection and fatality rates may be partially explained by ethnic differences in SERPINA1 allele frequencies.
  • 168
  • 19 Oct 2021
Topic Review
α-Synuclein Phosphorylation and Its Kinases
α-Synuclein is a protein with a molecular weight of 14.5 kDa and consists of 140 amino acids encoded by the SNCA gene. Missense mutations and gene duplications in the SNCA gene cause hereditary Parkinson’s disease. Highly phosphorylated and abnormally aggregated α-synuclein is a major component of Lewy bodies found in neuronal cells of patients with sporadic Parkinson’s disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, and glial cytoplasmic inclusion bodies in oligodendrocytes with multiple system atrophy. Aggregated α-synuclein is cytotoxic and plays a central role in the pathogenesis of the above-mentioned synucleinopathies. In a healthy brain, most α-synuclein is unphosphorylated; however, more than 90% of abnormally aggregated α-synuclein in Lewy bodies of patients with Parkinson’s disease is phosphorylated at Ser129, which is presumed to be of pathological significance. Several kinases catalyze Ser129 phosphorylation, but the role of phosphorylation enzymes in disease pathogenesis and their relationship to cellular toxicity from phosphorylation are not fully understood in α-synucleinopathy. G-protein-coupled receptor kinases, casein kinase II, and polo-like kinase possess the ability to phosphorylate α-synuclein protein. On this point, inhibition of these kinases is able to prevent α-synuclein phosphorylation, which indicates the potential therapeutic targets and availability of drug development for α-synucleinopathies. α-Synuclein phosphorylation can clinically be an accompanying event in the brains of patients with Parkinson’s disease rather than the critical factor for α-synuclein aggregation and toxicity. Nevertheless, increasing phosphorylated α-synuclein and the accumulation with disease progression is useful as a therapeutic target and biomarker.
  • 100
  • 08 Jun 2022
Topic Review
α-Synuclein
The α-syn, encoded by the SNCA1/PARK1 gene, is a ubiquitous protein that is abundantly expressed in kidneys and blood cells, but highly enriched in the brain, particularly in the presynaptic terminals of the neocortex, hippocampus, substantia nigra (SN), thalamus, and cerebellum. Interestingly, it has been found expressed in the cytoplasm of astrocytes and oligodendrocytes in healthy individuals.
  • 209
  • 12 Nov 2021
Topic Review
α-Melanocytic Hormone
The melanocortin system encompasses melanocortin peptides, five receptors, and two endogenous antagonists. Besides pigmentary effects generated by α-Melanocytic Hormone (α-MSH), new physiologic roles in sexual activity, exocrine secretion, energy homeostasis, as well as immunomodulatory actions, exerted by melanocortins, have been described recently. 
  • 200
  • 02 Feb 2021
Topic Review
α- and β-Pinene
α- and β-pinene are well-known representatives of the monoterpenes group, and are found in many plants’ essential oils. A wide range of pharmacological activities have been reported, including antibiotic resistance modulation, anticoagulant, antitumor, antimicrobial, antimalarial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-Leishmania, and analgesic effects. 
  • 608
  • 23 Jul 2021
Topic Review
Zoopharmacology
Zoopharmacognosy is the multidisciplinary approach of the self-medication behavior of many kinds of animals. Recent studies showed the presence of antitumoral secondary metabolites in some of the plants employed by animals and their use for the same therapeutic purposes in humans. Other related and sometimes confused term is Zootherapy, which consists on the employment of animal parts and/or their by-products such as toxins, venoms, etc., to treat different human ailments. Therefore, the aim of this work is to provide a brief insight for the use of Zoopharmacology (comprising Zoopharmacognosy and Zootherapy) as new paths to discover drugs studying animal behavior and/or using compounds derived from animals.
  • 243
  • 28 Jun 2021
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