Glycyrrhizic Acid Alleviates Semen Strychni-Induced Neurotoxicity Through the Inhibition of HMGB1 Phosphorylation and Inflammatory Responses


J Neuroimmune Pharmacol. 2024 May 21;19(1):21. doi: 10.1007/s11481-024-10128-8.


The neurotoxicity of Semen Strychni has been reported recently in several clinical cases. Therefore, this study was conducted to investigate the role of HMGB1 in a model of neurotoxicity induced by Semen Strychni and to assess the potential alleviating effects of glycyrrhizic acid (GA), which is associated with the regulation of HMGB1 release. Forty-eight SD rats were intraperitoneally injected with Semen Strychni extract (175 mg/kg), followed by oral administration of GA (50 mg/kg) for four days. After treatment of SS and GA, neuronal degeneration, apoptosis, and necrosis were observed via histopathological examination. Inflammatory cytokines (TNF-α and IL-1β), neurotransmitter associated enzymes (MAO and AChE), serum HMGB1, nuclear and cytoplasmic HMGB1/ph-HMGB1, and the interaction between PP2A, PKC, and HMGB1 were evaluated. The influence of the MAPK pathway was also examined. As a result, this neurotoxicity was characterized by neuronal degeneration and apoptosis, the induction of pro-inflammatory cytokines, and a reduction in neurotransmitter-metabolizing enzymes. In contrast, GA treatment significantly ameliorated the abovementioned effects and alleviated nerve injury. Furthermore, Semen Strychni promoted HMGB1 phosphorylation and its translocation between the nucleus and cytoplasm, thereby activating the NF-κB and MAPK pathways, initiating various inflammatory responses. Our experiments demonstrated that GA could partially reverse these effects. In summary, GA acid alleviated Semen Strychni-induced neurotoxicity, possibly by inhibiting HMGB1 phosphorylation and preventing its release from the cell.

PMID:38771510 | DOI:10.1007/s11481-024-10128-8