Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology

, Volume 21, Issue 6, pp 555–573

Molecular Basis of Neuroprotective Activities of Rasagiline and the Anti-Alzheimer Drug TV3326 [lpar;N-Propargyl-(3R) Aminoindan-5-YL)-Ethyl Methyl Carbamate]

  • Moussa B. H. Youdim
  • Marta Weinstock

DOI: 10.1023/A:1015131516649

Cite this article as:
Youdim, M.B.H. & Weinstock, M. Cell Mol Neurobiol (2001) 21: 555. doi:10.1023/A:1015131516649


Rasagiline (N-propargyl-1-(R)-aminoindan) is a selective, irreversible monoamine oxidase B (MAO B) inhibitor which has been developed as an anti-Parkinson drug. In controlled monotherapy and as adjunct to L-dopa it has shown anti-Parkinson activity. In cell culture (PC-12 and neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells) it exhibits neuroprotective and antiapoptotic activity against several neurotoxins (SIN-1, MPTP, 6-hydroxydopamine and N-methyl-(R)-salsolinol) and ischemia. In vivo, it reduces the sequelae of traumatic brain injury in mice and speeds their recovery. The neuroprotective activity of rasagaline does not result from MAO B inhibition, since its S-enantiomer, TVP1022, which has 1000-fold weaker MAO inhibitory activity, exhibits similar neuroprotective properties. Introduction of a carbamate moiety into the rasagiline molecule to confer cholinesterase inhibitory activity for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, resulted in compounds TV3326 [(N-Propargyl-(3R)Aminoindan-5-YL)-Ethyl Methyl Carbamate] and its S-enantiomer TV3279 [(N-Propargyl-(3S) Aminoindan-5-YL)-Ethyl Methyl Carbamate], which retain the neuroprotective activities of rasagiline and TVP1022. They also antagonize scopolamine-induced impairments in spatial memory. In addition, TV3326 exhibits brain-selective MAO A and B inhibitory activity after chronic administration and has antidepressant-like activity in the forced swim test. This is associated with an increase in brain levels of serotonin. The antiapoptotic activity of these propargylamine-containing derivatives may be related to their ability to delay the opening of voltage-dependent anion channels (VDAC), which are part of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore. The propargylamine moiety is responsible for the increase in the mitochondrial family of Bcl-2 proteins, prevention in the fall in mitochondrial membrane potential, prevention of the activation of caspase 3, and of translocation of glycerlaldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase from the cytoplasm to the nucleus. The latter processes are closely associated with neurotoxin-induced apoptosis. Rasagiline interacts with and prevents the binding of PK11195 to the pro-apoptotic peripheral benzodiazepine receptor, which together with Bcl-2, hexokinase, porin, and adenine nucleotide translocator constitutes part of the VDAC. Furthermore, rasagiline, TV3326 and TV3279 are able to influence the processing of amyloid precursor protein by activation of alpha-secretase and increasing the release of soluble alpha APP in rat PC-12 and human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells and in rat and mice cortex and hippocampus. This process has been shown to involve the upregulation of PKC and MAP kinase. It is quite likely that the induction of Bcl-2 and activation of PKC by rasagiline and TV3326 is closely linked to the anti-apototic action of these drugs and their ability to process APP by activation of alpha-secretase.

Parkinson's disease Alzheimer's disease acetylcholine dopamine rasagiline TV3326 apoptosis neuroprotection APP Bcl-2 PKC monoamine oxidase acetylcholinestrate depressive illness 

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Moussa B. H. Youdim
    • 1
  • Marta Weinstock
    • 2
  1. 1.Eve Topf and National Parkinson Foundation Centers for Neurodegenerative Diseases Research, Department of PharmacologyTechnion-Faculty of MedicineHaifaIsrael
  2. 2.Department of PharmacologyHebrew University Medical CenterJerusalemIsrael

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