Aims: Chronic hyperglycaemia activates the polyol pathway of glucose metabolism thereby stimulating the activation aldose reductase enzyme that in turn initiates a cascade of deleterious events, eventually, leading to nerve damage or neuropathy. Marine macroalgae and their isolated chemical constituents have been found to possess potential antidiabetic activity and have proved beneficial in the treatment of diabetes. In this study the neuroprotective effect of polyphenols isolated from the red macroalga Symphyocladia latiuscula was evaluated in experimental diabetic peripheral neuropathy.
Main methods: The polyphenolic fraction from Symphyocladia latiuscula was isolated. Diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN) was induced in animals by intraperitoneal injection of streptozotocin (45 mg/kg, b. w) and maintained for 6 weeks followed by treatment with SLPP or epalrestat. Nerve Conduction Velocity (NCV) and Compound Muscle Action Potential (CMAP) were measured using a non-invasive method followed by muscular grip strength test. Sciatic nerve aldose reductase activity, sorbitol accumulation, Na+K+-ATPase activity, production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and expression of AR and PKC were assessed.
Key findings: The Symphyocladia latiuscula polyphenols (SLPP) were found to inhibit aldose reductase activity as well as their expression in diabetic animals thereby improving the NCV, CMAP and muscle grip strength. Improvements in the sciatic nerve Na+K+-ATPase activity and intraneural accumulation of sorbitol, an index of aldose reductase overactivity, were evident with SLPP treatment. The production of pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL-6, IL-1β and TNF-α) and expression of protein kinase C (PKC) were also diminished.
Significance: The data suggest that the polyphenols of Symphyocladia latiuscula have neuroprotective potential against experimental DPN.
Keywords: Biochemistry; Neuroscience.