The Protective Action of Rubus sp. Fruit Extract Against Oxidative Damage in Mice Exposed to Lipopolysaccharide


Neuroinflammation is an event that occurs in several pathologies of brain. Rubus sp. (blackberry) is a powerful antioxidant fruit, and its extract has neuroprotective activity. The aim of this study was to investigate the blackberry extract properties on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced neuroinflammation, in relation to oxidative parameters and acetylcholinesterase activity in the brain structures of mice. We also investigated interleukin-10 levels in serum. Mice were submitted to Rubus sp. extract treatment once daily for 14 days. On the fifteenth day, LPS was injected in a single dose. LPS induced oxidative brain damage and the blackberry extract demonstrated preventive effects in LPS-challenged mice. LPS administration increased reactive oxygen species levels in the cerebral cortex and striatum, as well as lipid peroxidation in the cerebral cortex. However, the blackberry extract prevented all these parameters. Furthermore, LPS decreased thiol content in the striatum and hippocampus, while a neuroprotective effect of blackberry extract treatment was observed in relation to this parameter. The blackberry extract also prevented a decrease in catalase activity in all the brain structures and of superoxide dismutase in the striatum. An increase in acetylcholinesterase activity was detected in the cerebral cortex in the LPS group, but this activity was decreased in the Rubus sp. extract group. Serum IL-10 levels were reduced by LPS, and the extract was not able to prevent this change. Finally, we observed an antioxidant effect of blackberry extract in LPS-challenged mice suggesting that this anthocyanin-rich extract could be considered as a potential nutritional therapeutic agent for preventive damage associated with neuroinflammation.

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This research was supported by the Brazilian funding agencies CNPq, CAPES and FAPERGS. This study was financed in part by CAPES—Finance code 001. VCC, KPL, FHR and CMOS were also grateful for their research fellowships (CNPq).

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Correspondence to Mayara Sandrielly Pereira Soares.

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Ethical Approval

The protocols were approved by the Committee of Ethics and Animal Experimentation of the Federal University of Pelotas, RS, Brazil (protocol number: CEEA 3781/2017). All animal experiments were carried out in accordance with the National Institutes of Health guidelines for the care and use of Laboratory animals (NIH Publications No. 8023, revised 1978).

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Soares, M.S.P., Luduvico, K.P., Chaves, V.C. et al. The Protective Action of Rubus sp. Fruit Extract Against Oxidative Damage in Mice Exposed to Lipopolysaccharide. Neurochem Res (2021).

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  • Blackberry
  • Neuroinflammation
  • Anthocyanins
  • Mice