Neurochemical Research

, Volume 30, Issue 6–7, pp 797–807 | Cite as

Protective Effect of Carnosine During Nitrosative Stress in Astroglial Cell Cultures

  • V. CalabreseEmail author
  • C. Colombrita
  • E. Guagliano
  • M. Sapienza
  • A. Ravagna
  • V. Cardile
  • G. Scapagnini
  • A.M. Santoro
  • A. Mangiameli
  • D.A. Butterfield
  • A.M. Giuffrida Stella
  • E. Rizzarelli


Formation of nitric oxide by astrocytes has been suggested to contribute, via impairment of mitochondrial function, to the neurodegenerative process. Mitochondria under oxidative stress are thought to play a key role in various neurodegenerative disorders; therefore protection by antioxidants against oxidative stress to mitochondria may prove to be beneficial in delaying the onset or progression of these diseases. Carnosine has been recently proposed to act as antioxidant in vivo. In the present study, we demonstrate its neuroprotective effect in astrocytes exposed to LPS- and INFγ-induced nitrosative stress. Carnosine protected against nitric oxide-induced impairment of mitochondrial function. This effect was associated with decreased formation of oxidatively modified proteins and with decreased up-regulation oxidative stress-responsive genes, such as Hsp32, Hsp70 and mt-SOD. Our results sustain the possibility that carnosine might have anti-ageing effects to brain cells under pathophysiological conditions leading to degenerative damage, such as aging and neurodegenerative disorders.

Key words

antioxidants carnosine heme oxygenase mitochondria mt-SOD Oxidative stress 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • V. Calabrese
    • 1
    • 7
    Email author
  • C. Colombrita
    • 1
  • E. Guagliano
    • 1
  • M. Sapienza
    • 1
  • A. Ravagna
    • 1
  • V. Cardile
    • 2
  • G. Scapagnini
    • 3
  • A.M. Santoro
    • 4
  • A. Mangiameli
    • 5
  • D.A. Butterfield
    • 6
  • A.M. Giuffrida Stella
    • 1
  • E. Rizzarelli
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Chemical SciencesUniversity of CataniaItaly
  2. 2.Department of Physiological SciencesUniversity of CataniaItaly
  3. 3.CNR section of CataniaInstitute of Neurological SciencesItaly
  4. 4.CNR section of CataniaInstitute of Biostructures and BioimagesItaly
  5. 5.Department of Internal MedicineUniversity of CataniaItaly
  6. 6.Department of Chemistry, Center for Membrane Science, and Sander-Brown Center on AgingUniversity of KentuckyLexingtonUSA
  7. 7.Department of Chemistry, Biochemistry Mol. Biology Section, Faculty of MedicineUniversity of CataniaCataniaItaly

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