The effect of Semax and its C-end peptide PGP on the morphology and proliferative activity of rat brain cells during experimental ischemia: a pilot study

J Mol Neurosci. 2011 Oct;45(2):177-85. doi: 10.1007/s12031-010-9421-2. Epub 2010 Jul 9.


The neuropeptide preparation Semax (Met-Glu-His-Phe-Pro-Gly-Pro) has been employed successfully in clinical practice for treating patients with severe brain blood circulation disorders. In spite of numerous studies, many aspects of the therapeutic effects of this preparation remain unknown. In this context, the effects of Semax and its C-end tripeptide PGP on the functional morphology of nervous tissue cells were studied in the normal rat brain and in a model of incomplete global rat brain ischemia. In control animals, both peptides activated the capillary network and caused similar morphological changes to neurons and the neuropil regions. We show here for the first time at the histological level that Semax and PGP increased proliferation of the neuroglia, blood vessel endothelium, and progenitor cells in the subventricular zone. In these experimental conditions, only Semax abated the manifestation of ischemic damage to the nervous tissue. This was probably attributable to a decrease in vascular stasis symptoms as well as the trophic effect of the peptide.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone / analogs & derivatives*
  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone / genetics
  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone / pharmacology
  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone / therapeutic use
  • Animals
  • Brain / cytology*
  • Brain / drug effects*
  • Brain / pathology
  • Brain Ischemia / drug therapy
  • Brain Ischemia / pathology*
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neuroprotective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Neuroprotective Agents / therapeutic use
  • Oligopeptides / genetics
  • Oligopeptides / pharmacology*
  • Oligopeptides / therapeutic use
  • Peptide Fragments / genetics
  • Peptide Fragments / pharmacology*
  • Peptide Fragments / therapeutic use
  • Pilot Projects
  • Proline / analogs & derivatives*
  • Proline / genetics
  • Proline / pharmacology
  • Proline / therapeutic use
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar


  • Neuroprotective Agents
  • Oligopeptides
  • Peptide Fragments
  • prolyl-glycyl-proline
  • ACTH (4-7), Pro-Gly-Pro-
  • Adrenocorticotropic Hormone
  • Proline