Silicic Acid and Beer Consumption Reverses the Metal Imbalance and the Prooxidant Status Induced by Aluminum Nitrate in Mouse Brain

J Alzheimers Dis. 2017;56(3):917-927. doi: 10.3233/JAD-160972.


Background: Emerging evidence suggests that by affecting mineral balance, aluminum (Al) may enhance some events associated with neurodegenerative diseases.

Aim: To examine the effect of Al(NO3)3 exposure on brain Al, cooper (Cu), iron (Fe), magnesium (Mg), manganese (Mn), silicon (Si), and zinc (Zn) levels, and the metal-change implication in brain oxidant and inflammatory status.

Methods: Four groups of six-week-old male NMRI mice were treated for three months: i) controls, administrated with deionized water; ii) Al, which received Al(NO3)3; iii) Al+silicic acid, which were given Al(NO3)3 plus silicic acid; and iv) Al+beer, which received Al(NO3)3 plus beer.

Results: Brain Al and TBARS levels and TNFα and GPx expressions increased, while Cu, Mn, and Zn levels, and catalase and CuZn-SOD expression decreased (at least, p < 0.05) in Al versus control animals. Al, Si, and TBARS levels and TNFα expression decreased (p < 0.05) in Al+silicic acid and Al+beer specimens while Cu, Mn, and Zn levels and antioxidant expression increased versus the Al group. Brain Al levels correlated negatively with those of Cu, Fe, Mn, and Zn, and catalase, CuZn-SOD, and GPx enzyme expressions but positively with Si and TBARS levels and TNFα expression. Two components of the principal component analysis (PCA) explained 71.2% of total data variance (p < 0.001). PCA connected the pro-oxidant markers with brain Al content, while brain Zn and Cu levels were closer to antioxidant enzyme expression.

Conclusion: Administration of Al(NO3)3 induced metal imbalance, inflammation, and antioxidant status impairment in the brain. Those effects were blocked to a significant extent by silicic acid and beer administration.

Keywords: Aluminum; Silicon; TBARS; TNFα; aluminum nitrate; antioxidants; beer; brain; copper; enzyme expressions; iron; magnesium; manganese; silicic acid; zinc.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aluminum / metabolism
  • Aluminum Compounds / toxicity*
  • Animals
  • Beer*
  • Brain / drug effects*
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Cations / metabolism
  • Copper / metabolism
  • Gene Expression / drug effects
  • Inflammation / drug therapy
  • Inflammation / metabolism
  • Iron / analysis
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Neuroprotective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Nitrates / toxicity*
  • Random Allocation
  • Silicic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances / metabolism
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / metabolism
  • Zinc / metabolism


  • Aluminum Compounds
  • Cations
  • Neuroprotective Agents
  • Nitrates
  • Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Silicic Acid
  • Copper
  • Aluminum
  • Iron
  • aluminum nitrate
  • Zinc