Metabolic Brain Disease

, Volume 34, Issue 6, pp 1689–1703 | Cite as

Combination of schisandrin and nootkatone exerts neuroprotective effect in Alzheimer’s disease mice model

  • Yu Qi
  • Xinhui Cheng
  • Huiting Jing
  • Tingxu Yan
  • Feng Xiao
  • Bo Wu
  • Kaishun BiEmail author
  • Ying JiaEmail author
Original Article


Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is one of the most common neurodegenerative diseases which seriously affect the quality of life of the elderly. Schisandrin (SCH) and nootkatone (NKT) are the two marked active components in ASHP. In this study, the effects of Alpinia oxyphylla—Schisandra chinensis herb pair (ASHP) as well as its bioactive components on cognitive deficiency and dementia were revealed via Aβ1–42-induced AD in mouse. Morris water maze test showed that acute administration of ASHP and SCH + NKT treatments had higher discrimination index in the object recognition task, more quadrant dwell time and shorter escape latency compared with those in the Morris water maze. The levels of TNF-α, IL-1β and IL-6 were decreased after ASHP and SCH + NKT treatment. The inflammatory response was attenuated by inhibiting TLR4/ NF-κB/ NLRP3 pathway. In addition, ASHP and SCH + NKT treatments significantly restored the activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD), glutathione S-transferase (GST), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), total antioxidant capacity (T-AOC) and inducible nitric oxide syntheses (iNOS), and the levels of glutathione (GSH), malondialdehyde (MDA) and nitric oxide (NO). The histopathological changes of hippocampus were noticeably improved after ASHP and SCH + NKT treatments. These findings demonstrate that ASHP as well as its bioactive components exerted a protective effects on cognitive disorder, inflammatory reaction and oxidative stress.


Alzheimers’ disease Cognitive dysfunction Inflammation Oxidation Schisandrin Nootkatone 



This study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (no. 81573580). Key laboratory of polysaccharide bioactivity evaluation of TCM of Liaoning Province. Key techniques study of consistency evaluation of drug quality and therapeutic effect (18-400-4-08) and Liaoning Distinguished Professor Project for Ying Jia (2017).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflict of interest to declare.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Traditional Chinese Materia MedicaShenyang Pharmaceutical UniversityShenyangPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.School of Functional Food and wineShenyang Pharmaceutical UniversityShenyangPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.School of PharmacyShenyang Pharmaceutical UniversityShenyangPeople’s Republic of China

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