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The effects of onion extract on Blood-Brain Barrier (BBB) dysfunction during ischemia/hypoxia

Hyun, Soo-Wang; Park, Sung Lyea; Kim, TaeHo; Jung, Yi-Sook
Department of Physiology, Ajou University School of Medicine
During brain ischemia, reactive oxygen species (ROS) are critical event that induces blood-brain barrier (BBB) dysfunction and subsequently brain edema. The inhibition of ROS has been reported to attenuate BBB disruption and edema under various pathologic conditions including ischemia. In addition, several studies have reported that onion extract inhibited the generation of ROS. However, the effects of onion extract on brain edema are not known. In this study, we examined the effects of onion extract on ischemia-induced brain edema. In in vivo brain ischemia model, onion extract reduced the water content. Onion extract also attenuated brain ischemia-induced increase in BBB permeability and the disruption of tight junction protein zonula occludens-1 (ZO-1) in vivo and in vitro. In addition, onion extract inhibited generation of ROS and prevent impairment of antioxidant system induced by brain ischemia. Taken together, our results suggest that onion extract have protective effects on brain edema, possibly through its antioxidant effects.
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