Ginsenoside Rg5 prevents apoptosis by modulating nuclear factor and alters the expression of cognitive impairment-associated genes in the thermal stress-exposed HT22 cells, according to a study published in the Journal of Ginseng Research.
This study conducted by the researchers at College of Life Science, CHA University was aimed to explore whether ginsenoside Rg5 could suppress hippocampal neuronal cell line HT22 from thermal stress.
The first goal of the study is to examine that thermal stress causes the cell cycle and the treatment with ginsenoside Rg5 can prevent this process. In the experiments, the cell viability assay results showed that the thermal stress imposed a negative impact on HT22 cells but ginsenoside Rg5 showed nontoxic to them. Further, western blot experiment showed that Rg5 decreased the expression of gene p21 and cleaved-PARP (a caspase poly (ADP-ribose) polymerases) whose activations can induce cell cycle arrest in thermal stress-exposed HT22 cells, and this result indicates that ginsenoside Rg5 plays an inhibitory role in inducing apoptosis of HT22 cells.
More notably, researchers found that ginsenoside Rg5 can exert a protective impact on improving cognitive functions. “Before, Rg5-enriched red ginseng extract has beneficial effects on memory enhancing in vivo, and this indicates that ginsenoside Rg5 might be a phytochemical as a therapeutic ingredient for environmental thermal stress-induced abnormalities in hippocampal. We want to identify the mechanism of action of ginsenoside Rg5 in preventing environmental thermal stress in hippocampal neuronal cells,” said researcher Seo-Yun Choi.
Brain-derived neurotrophic factor(BDNF) is associated with the cognitive performance and its expression will lead to a decrease in long-term memory. Researchers designed groups of experiments to test the effect of ginsenoside Rg5 on BDNF and the result showed that ginsenoside Rg5 prevented thermal stress-induced BDNF alteration, thus help prevent the cognitive dysfunction.
Ginsenosides are natural compounds extracted from Araliaceae plants like Panax ginseng. As the metabolite of prototype ginsenosides, rare ginsenosides exhibit powerful anticancer activities in many aspects.This study indicates that ginsenoside Rg5 as a neuroprotective natural compound against thermal stress-induced apoptosis.