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Taurine exerts neuroprotective effects via anti-apoptosis in hypoxic-ischemic brain injury in neonatal rats

Korean Journal of Pediatrics 2009;52(12):1337-1347.
Published online December 15, 2009.
Taurine exerts neuroprotective effects via anti-apoptosis in hypoxic-ischemic brain injury in neonatal rats
Ji Eun Jeong1, Tae Yeol Kim1, Hye Jin Park1, Kye Hyang Lee1, Kyung Hoon Lee1, Eun Jin Choi1, Jin Kyung Kim1, Hai Lee Chung1, Eok Su Seo2, Woo Taek Kim1
1Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, Catholic University of Daegu, Daegu, Korea
2Department of Pediatrics, Dongguk University College of Medicine, Gyeongju, Gyungbook, Korea
신생 흰쥐의 저산소성 허혈성 뇌손상에서 항세포사멸사를 통한 taurine의 신경보호 효과
정지은1, 김태열1, 박혜진1, 이계향1, 이경훈1, 최은진1, 김진경1, 정혜리1, 서억수2, 김우택1
1대구가톨릭대학교 의과대학 소아과학교실
2동국대학교 의과대학 안과학교실
Correspondence: 
Woo Taek Kim, Email: wootykim@cu.ac.kr
Abstract
Purpose
: Taurine (2-aminoethanesulfonic acid) is a simple sulfur-containing amino acid. It is abundantly present in tissues such as brain, retina, heart, and skeletal muscles. Current studies have demonstrated the neuroprotective effects of taurine, but limited data are available for such effects during neonatal period. The aim of this study was to determine whether taurine could reduce hypoxic-ischemic (HI) cerebral injury via anti-apoptosis mechanism.
Methods
: Embryonic cortical neurons isolated from Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats at 18 days gestation were cultured in vitro. The cells were divided into hypoxia group, taurine-treated group before hypoxic insult, and taurine-treated group after HI insult. In the in vivo model, left carotid artery ligation was performed in 7-day-old SD rat pups. The pups were exposed to hypoxia, administered an injection of 30 mg/kg of taurine, and killed at 1 day, 3 days, 1 week, 2 weeks, and 4 weeks after the hypoxic insult. We compared the expressions of Bcl-2, Bax, and caspase-3 among the 3 groups by using real- time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and western blotting.
Results
: The cells in the taurine-treated group before hypoxic insult, although similar in appearance to those in the normoxia group, were lesser in number. In the taurine-treated group, Bcl-2 expression increased, whereas Bax and caspase-3 expressions reduced.
Conclusion
: Taurine exerts neuroprotective effects onperinatal HI brain injury due to its anti-apoptotic effect. The neuroprotective effect was maximal at 1–2 weeks after the hypoxic injury.
Key Words: Taurine, Apoptosis, Hypoxic-ischemic brain injury, Neuroprotective effect


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