Nitroxides affect neurological deficits and lesion size induced by a rat model of traumatic brain injury

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Nitric Oxide - Biology and Chemistry, 2020, 97 pp. 57 - 65
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© 2020 Elsevier Inc. Research has attributed tissue damage post-traumatic brain injury (TBI) to two-pronged effects, increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) and impairment of endogenous antioxidant defence systems, underpinned by manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD). Novel antioxidant nitroxides have been shown to mimic MnSOD to ameliorate oxidative stress related disorders. This study aimed to investigate the effects of two nitroxides, CTMIO and DCTEIO, on the neurological outcomes following moderate TBI in rats induced by a weight drop device. The rats were immediately treated with CTMIO and DCTEIO (40 mM in drinking water) post-injury for up to 2 weeks. The brains were histologically examined at 24 h and 6 weeks post injury. DCTEIO reduced the lesion size at both 24h and 6 weeks, with normalised performance in sensory, motor and cognitive tests at 24h post-injury. Astrogliosis was heightened by DCTEIO at 24h and still elevated at 6 weeks in this group. In TBI brains, cellular damage was evident as reflected by changes in markers of mitophagy and autophagy (increased fission marker dynamin-related protein (Drp)-1, and autophagy marker light chain 3 (LC3)A/B and reduced fusion marker optic atrophy (Opa)-1). These were normalised by DCTEIO treatment. CTMIO, on the other hand, seems to be toxic to the injured brains, by increasing injury size at 6 weeks. In conclusion, DCTEIO significantly improved tissue repair and preserved neurological function in rats with TBI possibly via a mitophagy mechanism. This study provides evidence for DCTEIO as a promising new option to alleviate lesion severity after moderate TBI, which is not actively treated.
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