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Special Issue "Natural Products and Neuroprotection 3.0"

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Bioactives and Nutraceuticals".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 August 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. David Vauzour
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Norwich Medical School, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich NR4 7UQ, UK
Interests: neurodegenerative disorders; phytochemicals; neuroinflammation; memory; learning and neuro-cognitive performances; signalling pathways; oxidative stress
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Neurodegenerative diseases are among the most serious health problems affecting millions of people worldwide, and their incidence is dramatically growing together with increased lifespan. These diseases are a heterogenous group of chronic, progressive disorders characterized by the gradual loss of neurons in the central nervous system, which leads to deficits in specific brain functions. The most common neurodegenerative diseases are Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, multiple sclerosis, and Huntington’s disease. These multifactorial debilitating disorders share common molecular and cellular characteristics, such as oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, protein misfolding, excitotoxicity, and inflammation. Presently, there are no therapeutic approaches to cure or even halt the progression of these disorders. In this context, natural products, because of their broad spectrum of pharmacological and biological activities, are considered promising alternatives for the treatment of neurodegeneration. Natural compounds have been recognized to possess different biological activities, including antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antiapoptotic effects. Moreover, natural compounds have been recently shown to counteract protein misfolding and to modulate autophagy and proteasome activity.

In this Special Issue, we invite investigators to contribute original research articles, as well as review articles regarding the biological effect of natural products in preventing/counteracting neurodegeneration.

Topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • Clinical or preclinical studies investigating natural products in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases;
  • The role of natural products in counteracting oxidative stress in neurodegeneration;
  • The role of natural products in counteracting inflammation in neurodegeneration;
  • The use of natural products in modulating autophagy and proteasome activity to counteract abnormal protein aggregation in neurodegeneration;
  • The role of natural products in modulating signalling pathways involved in neurodegeneration;
  • The use of natural products as lead compounds in drug discovery for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

Prof. Cristina Angeloni
Prof. Dr. David Vauzour
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Molecular Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. There is an Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal. For details about the APC please see here. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • oxidative stress
  • inflammation
  • protein misfolding
  • natural compounds
  • nutraceuticals
  • phytochemicals
  • neurodegeneration
  • alzheimer’s disease
  • parkinson’s disease
  • amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • multiple sclerosis
  • huntington’s disease

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Quercetin Attenuates Brain Oxidative Alterations Induced by Iron Oxide Nanoparticles in Rats
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(8), 3829; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms22083829 - 07 Apr 2021
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Abstract
Iron oxide nanoparticle (IONP) therapy has diverse health benefits but high doses or prolonged therapy might induce oxidative cellular injuries especially in the brain. Therefore, we conducted the current study to investigate the protective role of quercetin supplementation against the oxidative alterations induced [...] Read more.
Iron oxide nanoparticle (IONP) therapy has diverse health benefits but high doses or prolonged therapy might induce oxidative cellular injuries especially in the brain. Therefore, we conducted the current study to investigate the protective role of quercetin supplementation against the oxidative alterations induced in the brains of rats due to IONPs. Forty adult male albino rats were allocated into equal five groups; the control received a normal basal diet, the IONP group was intraperitoneally injected with IONPs of 50 mg/kg body weight (B.W.) and quercetin-treated groups had IONPs + Q25, IONPs + Q50 and IONPs + Q100 that were orally supplanted with quercetin by doses of 25, 50 and 100 mg quercetin/kg B.W. daily, respectively, administrated with the same dose of IONPs for 30 days. IONPs induced significant increases in malondialdehyde (MDA) and significantly decreased reduced glutathione (GSH) and oxidized glutathione (GSSG). Consequently, IONPs significantly induced severe brain tissue injuries due to the iron deposition leading to oxidative alterations with significant increases in brain creatine phosphokinase (CPK) and acetylcholinesterase (AChE). Furthermore, IONPs induced significant reductions in brain epinephrine, serotonin and melatonin with the downregulation of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator 1-alpha (PGC-1α) and mitochondrial transcription factor A (mtTFA) mRNA expressions. IONPs induced apoptosis in the brain monitored by increases in caspase 3 and decreases in B-cell lymphoma 2 (Bcl2) expression levels. Quercetin supplementation notably defeated brain oxidative damages and in a dose-dependent manner. Therefore, quercetin supplementation during IONPs is highly recommended to gain the benefits of IONPs with fewer health hazards. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Products and Neuroprotection 3.0)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Can Natural Products Exert Neuroprotection without Crossing the Blood–Brain Barrier?
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2021, 22(7), 3356; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijms22073356 - 25 Mar 2021
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Abstract
The scope of evidence on the neuroprotective impact of natural products has been greatly extended in recent years. However, a key question that remains to be answered is whether natural products act directly on targets located in the central nervous system (CNS), or [...] Read more.
The scope of evidence on the neuroprotective impact of natural products has been greatly extended in recent years. However, a key question that remains to be answered is whether natural products act directly on targets located in the central nervous system (CNS), or whether they act indirectly through other mechanisms in the periphery. While molecules utilized for brain diseases are typically bestowed with a capacity to cross the blood–brain barrier, it has been recently uncovered that peripheral metabolism impacts brain functions, including cognition. The gut–microbiota–brain axis is receiving increasing attention as another indirect pathway for orally administered compounds to act on the CNS. In this review, we will briefly explore these possibilities focusing on two classes of natural products: omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) from marine sources and polyphenols from plants. The former will be used as an example of a natural product with relatively high brain bioavailability but with tightly regulated transport and metabolism, and the latter as an example of natural compounds with low brain bioavailability, yet with a growing amount of preclinical and clinical evidence of efficacy. In conclusion, it is proposed that bioavailability data should be sought early in the development of natural products to help identifying relevant mechanisms and potential impact on prevalent CNS disorders, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Products and Neuroprotection 3.0)
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