Cell and Tissue Research

, Volume 350, Issue 2, pp 305–315 | Cite as

The flavonoids hesperidin and rutin promote neural crest cell survival

  • Jader Nones
  • Ana Paula Costa
  • Rodrigo Bainy Leal
  • Flávia Carvalho Alcantara Gomes
  • Andréa Gonçalves Trentin
Regular Article


The neural crest (NC) corresponds to a collection of multipotent and oligopotent progenitors endowed with both neural and mesenchymal potentials. The derivatives of the NC at trunk level include neurons and glial cells of the peripheral nervous system in addition to melanocytes, smooth muscle cells and some endocrine cells. Environmental factors control the fate decisions of NC cells. Despite the well-known influence of flavonoids on the central nervous system, the issue of whether they also influence NC cells has not been yet addressed. Flavonoids are polyphenolic compounds that are integral components of the human diet. The biological activities of these compounds cover a very broad spectrum, from anticancer and antibacterial activities to inhibition of bone reabsorption and modulation of inflammatory response. In the present work, we have investigated the actions of the flavonoids hesperidin, rutin and quercetin on NC cells of quail, in vitro. We show for the first time, that hesperidin and rutin increase the viability of trunk NC cells in culture, without affecting cell differentiation and proliferation. The molecular mechanism of this action is dependent on ERK2 and PI3K pathways. Quercetin had no effect on NC progenitors. Taken together, these results suggest that flavonoids hesperidin and rutin increase NC cell survival, which may be useful against the toxicity of some chemicals during embryonic development.


Flavonoids Neural crest Cell survival and differentiation ERK and PI3 kinase pathway 



We would like to thank José Luis Morales for the English revision of the manuscript. This study was supported by grants from the Fundação Carlos Chagas Filho de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (FAPERJ, Brazil), Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES, Brazil), Ministério da Ciência e Tecnologia/Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (MCT/CNPq/Brazil), MCT/INFRA (Brazil), PRONEX/CNPq, Instituto Nacional de Neurociência Translacional (INNT, Brazil) and Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de Santa Catarina (FAPESC, SC, Brazil).

Financial Support



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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jader Nones
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ana Paula Costa
    • 3
  • Rodrigo Bainy Leal
    • 3
  • Flávia Carvalho Alcantara Gomes
    • 1
  • Andréa Gonçalves Trentin
    • 2
  1. 1.Instituto de Ciências BiomédicasUniversidade Federal do Rio de JaneiroRio de JaneiroBrazil
  2. 2.Departamento de Biologia Celular, Embriologia e Genética, Centro de Ciências BiológicasUniversidade Federal de Santa CatarinaFlorianópolisBrazil
  3. 3.Departamento de Bioquímica - Centro de Ciências BiológicasUniversidade Federal de Santa CatarinaFlorianópolisBrazil

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