Maternal consumption of piceatannol: A nutritional neuroprotective strategy against hypoxia-ischemia in rat neonates

Brain Res. 2019 Aug 15;1717:86-94. doi: 10.1016/j.brainres.2019.04.012. Epub 2019 Apr 13.


Hypoxia-ischemia (HI) remains a major cause of perinatal mortality and chronic disability in newborns worldwide (1-6 for 1000 births) with a high risk of future motor, behavioral and neurological deficits. Keeping newborns under moderate hypothermia is the unique therapeutic approach but is not sufficiently successful as nearly 50% of infants do not respond to it. In a 7-day post-natal rat model of HI, we used pregnant and breastfeeding female nutritional supplementation with piceatannol (PIC), a polyphenol naturally found in berries, grapes and passion fruit, as a neuroprotective strategy. Maternal supplementation led to neuroprotection against neonate brain damage and reversed their sensorimotor deficits as well as cognitive impairments. Neuroprotection of per os maternal supplementation with PIC is a preventive strategy to counteract brain damage in pups induced by HI. This nutritional approach could easily be adopted as a preventive strategy in humans.

Keywords: Behavior; Magnetic resonance imaging; Maternal supplementation; Neonatal hypoxia-ischemia; Neuroprotection; Piceatannol.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Animals, Newborn
  • Behavior, Animal / drug effects
  • Brain / drug effects
  • Brain Injuries / drug therapy
  • Cognitive Dysfunction / drug therapy
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Female
  • Hypoxia / metabolism
  • Hypoxia-Ischemia, Brain / drug therapy*
  • Ischemia
  • Maternal Nutritional Physiological Phenomena / physiology*
  • Neurons / drug effects
  • Neuroprotection / drug effects
  • Neuroprotective Agents / pharmacology
  • Pregnancy
  • Rats
  • Stilbenes / metabolism
  • Stilbenes / pharmacology*


  • Neuroprotective Agents
  • Stilbenes
  • 3,3',4,5'-tetrahydroxystilbene