Neurochemical Research

, Volume 35, Issue 2, pp 227–238 | Cite as

The Effects of Polyphenols on Survival and Locomotor Activity in Drosophila melanogaster Exposed to Iron and Paraquat

  • M. Jimenez-Del-Rio
  • C. Guzman-Martinez
  • C. Velez-Pardo
Original Paper


Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a common progressive neurodegenerative disorder, for which at present no causal treatment is available. On the understanding that the causes of PD are mainly oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction, antioxidants and other drugs are expected to be used. In the present study, we demonstrated for the first time that pure polyphenols such as gallic acid, ferulic acid, caffeic acid, coumaric acid, propyl gallate, epicatechin, epigallocatechin, and epigallocatechin gallate protect, rescue and, most importantly, restore the impaired movement activity (i.e., climbing capability) induced by paraquat in Drosophila melanogaster, a valid model of PD. We also showed for the first time that high concentrations of iron (e.g. 15 mM FeSO4) are able to diminish fly survival and movement to a similar extent as (20 mM) paraquat treatment. Moreover, paraquat and iron synergistically affect both survival and locomotor function. Remarkably, propyl gallate and epigallocatechin gallate protected and maintained movement abilities in flies co-treated with paraquat and iron. Our findings indicate that pure polyphenols might be potent neuroprotective agents for the treatment of PD against stressful stimuli.


Drosophila Iron Locomotor Parkinson Paraquat Polyphenol Survival Toxicity 



This work was supported by Colciencias grants #1115-408-20504, and CODI-U.deA. grants #2408 awarded to C.V.-P. and M.J.-Del-Rio.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Jimenez-Del-Rio
    • 1
    • 2
  • C. Guzman-Martinez
    • 1
    • 2
  • C. Velez-Pardo
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Medicine, Medical Research Institute, Neuroscience Research GroupUniversity of Antioquia (UdeA)MedellinColombia
  2. 2.SIUMedellinColombia

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