Abnormal and sometimes severe behavioral and molecular symptoms are usually observed in epileptic humans and animals. To address this issue, we examined the behavioral and molecular aspects of seizure evoked by pilocarpine. Autophagy can promote both cell survival and death, but there are controversial reports about the neuroprotective or neurodegenerative effects of autophagy in seizure. Cannabidiol has anticonvulsant properties in some animal models when used as a pretreatment. In this study, we investigated alteration of seizure scores, autophagy pathway proteins, and antioxidant status in hippocampal cells during the chronic phase of pilocarpine-induced epilepsy after treatment with cannabidiol. Cannabidiol (100 ng, intracerebroventricular injection) delayed the chronic phase of epilepsy. Single administration of cannabidiol during the chronic phase of seizure significantly diminished seizure scores such as mouth clonus, head nodding, monolateral and bilateral forelimb clonus and increased the activity of catalase enzyme and reduced glutathione content. Such a protective effect in the behavioral scores of epileptic rats was also observed after repeated administrations of cannabidiol at the onset of the silent phase. Moreover, the amount of Atg7, conjugation of Atg5/12, Atg12, and LC3II/LC3I ratio increased significantly in epileptic rats treated with repeated injections of cannabidiol. In short, our results suggest that post-treatment of Cannabidiol could enhance the induction of autophagy pathway and antioxidant defense in the chronic phase of epilepsy, which could be considered as the protective mechanisms of cannabidiol in a temporal lobe epilepsy model.
Keywords: Antioxidant status; Autophagy; Cannabidiol; Pilocarpine-induced seizure.