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Stress, specifically chronic unpredictable stress and chronic restrained stress, induce depigmentation in C57BL/6 mice. Fluoxetine promoted melanin production and the migration of melanocytes via 5-HT1A receptor and 5-HT2A receptor, respectively.<br><br>Display Omitted<br>• Fluoxetine ameliorates CUMS and CRS induced depigmentation in C57BL/6 mouse. • Fluoxetine induces melanogenesis via activating the phosphorylation of p38 MAPK signaling pathways. • 5-HT1A and 2A receptors regulated fluoxetine increased melanocyte melanogenesis and migration.<br>Background: 5-HT1A receptor was participated in fluoxetine induced melanogenesis in melanocytes and in normal C57BL/6 mice, but we know little about whether other 5-HT receptors are involved in regulation of fluoxetine promotes pigmentation.<br>Objective: To investigate the role of 5-HT receptors in regulation of fluoxetine ameliorates chronic unpredictable mild stress (CUMS) and chronic restraint stress (CRS) induce hypopigmentation in C57BL/6 mice.<br>Methods: CUMS and CRS were used to induce depigmentation in mice and evaluate the effect of fluoxetine. Western blot, immunohistochemistry and Q-PCR assay were used to determine the levels of protein and mRNA. Masson Fontana staining was used for melanin staining and FITC-Phalloidin staining was used to detect the expression of F-actin. Zebrafish and B16F10 cells were used for the mechanism research.<br>Results: Fluoxetine (2.6 mg/kg, ig) ameliorated hypopigmentation induced by CUMS and CRS in mice, significantly increased the mRNA and protein levels of 5-HT1 A and 5-HT2 A receptors in mice and B16F10 cells. The effect of fluoxetine on melanogenesis in B16F10 cells and zebrafish were inhibited by WAY100635 (a selective 5-HT1 A receptor antagonist) and ketanserin (a 5-HT2 A receptor antagonist), respectively. Activation of p38 MAPK signaling pathways was contributed to fluoxetine induced melanogenesis and inhibited by WAY100635, but not ketanserin. However, ketanserin selectively weakened the action of fluoxetine promoted migration and up-regulated Rab27a protein expression in B16F10 cells.<br>Conclusions: 5-HT1 A and 2 A receptors contribute to melanogenesis and migration property of fluoxetine. The newly revealed mechanism indicates that fluoxetine and its analogues may be a potential drug for treatment of depigmentation disorders.

Zuotai is a drug containing mercury considered to be the king of Tibetan medicine. The biosafety of Zuotai led people's attention and so far little is known about the toxicity of Zuotai to mast cells. RBL-2H3 cells which used as an alternative model of mast cells were treated with Zuotai, β-HgS and positive drug Compound 48/80 respectively. 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay was used to determine the toxicity of drugs to RBL-2H3 cells. The degranulation of RBL-2H3 cells was studied from β-hexosaminidase, histamine, interleukin (IL)-4 and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α). The result showed that Zuotai can affect the cytotoxicity and degranulation of RBL-2H3 cells and the results can provide reference for the toxicity evaluations of Tibetan medicine Zuotai.

Abstract Ethnopharmacological relevance Zuotai (gTso thal) has a long history in the treatment of cardiovascular disease, liver and bile diseases, spleen and stomach diseases as a precious adjuvant in Tibetan medicine. However, Zuotai is a mercury preparation that contains 54.5% HgS. Its application has always been controversial. Aim of the study To evaluate the toxicological effects of Zuotai in hepatocytes and in zebrafish. Materials and methods MTT was used to determine the survival rate of hepatocytes; Hoechst and TUNEL staining were used to detect the apoptosis cells; Western blot and RT-qPCR assay were used to determine the expression levels of the protein and mRNA; Liver morphology observation and H&E staining were used to evaluate the hepatotoxicity of Zuotai in Zebfrafish. Results The survival rate of L-02 cells, HepG2 cells and RBL-2A cells reduced by Zuotai (10−4–0.1 mg/mL) in a dose and time-dependent manner. Zuotai (0.1 mg/mL) induced HepG2 cells shrinkage, condensation and fragmentation and increased the number of apoptosis cells. The protein expression levels of cleaved Caspase-3 and Bax were increased and the expression levels of Bcl-2 were reduced after HepG2 cells exposed to Zuotai (10−4–0.1 mg/mL) for 24 h. In addition, Zuotai (0.2 mg/mL) induced the darker liver color of the larval zebrafish and changed the liver morphologic of adult zebrafish. Zuotai (0.2 mg/mL) also increased the mRNA levels of CYP1A1, CYP1B1 and MT-1 in the liver of adult zebrafish. However, no significantly hepatotoxicity was observed after hepatocytes and zebrafish exposed to HgS at the same dose. Conclusions Results showed that Zuotai induced hepatotoxicity effectively under a certain dose but its hepatotoxicity likely occurs via other mechanisms that did not depend on HgS. Graphical abstract Zuotai, a clinical adjuvant in Tibetan medicine, contains 54.5% HgS, which can induce apoptosis of liver cells and liver injury in zebrafish. However, HgS, the principal component of Zuotai did not exhibit hepatotoxicity at the same dose. fx1 [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]

Stress has been demonstrated to play an important role in hair follicle function and the pathogenesis of some hair disorders. The central hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis is activated by stress stimuli, synthesizes and releases various components and eventually induces the pathogenesis and recurrence of peripheral diseases. Our aim is to compare the different responses under exposure of stress in hair follicle function among different mouse strains, and to detect the involvement of the central HPA axis after stress in hair follicle growth and melanogenesis. In this study, we exposed different mouse strains (C57BL/6, CBA/J, C3H/HeN, BALB/c and ICR) to a 21-day chronic restraint stress protocol and selected C57BL/6, CBA/J and BALB/c mice for further study because of their significant behavioral alterations. Then, we evaluated and compared the different responses and sensitivity to chronic restraint stress in hair follicle function and central HPA axis among the selected strains. The results showed that expression of POMC, CRF and GR mRNA and protein and serum levels of corticosterone were inhibited in response to stress. These findings suggested that chronic restraint stress may inhibit hair follicle growth and melanogenesis via regulating the key elements of the central HPA axis. In addition, the results revealed different mouse strains exhibit different responses in the central HPA axis and hair follicle after stress exposure. C57BL/6 might be the most sensitive strain among the three strains tested as well as an appropriate strain to study possible pathophysiological mechanisms by which the nervous system influences skin function and screen dermatological drugs suitable for psychotherapy. We believe the current study will provide some useful information for researchers who are interested in the bidirectional communication between the nervous and skin systems and the management of stress-induced cutaneous diseases. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]

As metabolomics is widely used in the study of disease mechanisms, an increasing number of studies have found that metabolites play an important role in the occurrence of diseases. The aim of this study is to investigate the effects and mechanisms of quercetin in high-fat-sucrose diet (HFD)-induced nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) development using nontargeted metabolomics. A rat model of NAFLD was established by feeding with an HFD for 30 and 50 days. The results indicated quercetin exhibited hepatoprotective activity in 30-day HFD-induced NAFLD rats by regulating fatty acid related metabolites (adrenic acid, etc.), inflammation-related metabolites (arachidonic acid, etc.), oxidative stress-related metabolites (2-hydroxybutyric acid) and other differential metabolites (citric acid, etc.). However, quercetin did not improve NAFLD in the 50-day HFD; perhaps quercetin was unable to reverse the inflammation induced by a long-term high-fat diet. These data indicate that dietary quercetin may be beneficial to NAFLD in early stages. Furthermore, combining metabolomics and experimental approaches opens avenues to study the effects and mechanisms of drugs for complex diseases.

Recent evidence has established that consumption of High-fat diet (HFD)-induced obesity is associated with deficits in hippocampus-dependent memory/learning and mood states. Nevertheless the link between obesity and emotional disorders still remains to be elucidated. This issue is of particular interest during adolescence, which is important period for shaping learning/memory and mood regulation that can be sensitive to the detrimental effects of HFD. Our present study is focused to investigate behavioral and metabolic influences of short-term HFD intake in adolescent C57BL/6 mice. HFD caused weight gain, impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) and depression-like behavior as early as after 3 weeks which was clearly proved by a decrease in number of groomings in the open field test (OFT) and an increase in immobility time in the tail suspension test (TST). In the 4th week HFD induced obese model was fully developed and above behavioral symptoms were more dominant (decrease in number of crossings and groomings and increase in immobility time in both FST and TST). At the end of 6th week hippocampal analysis revealed the differences in morphology (reduced Nissl positive neurons and decreased the 5-HT<sub>1A</sub> receptor expression), neuronal survival (increased cleaved caspase-3 expression), synaptic plasticity (down regulation of <i>p</i>-CREB and BDNF), and inflammatory responses (increase in expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines and decrease in expression of anti-inflammatory cyokines) in HFD mice. Our results demonstrate that, high-fat feeding of adolescent mice could provoke “depression-like” behavior as early as 3 weeks and modulate structure, neuron survival and neuroinflammation in hippocampus as early as 6 weeks proving that adolescent age is much prone to adverse effects of HFD, which causes obesity, behavioral differences, memory and learning deficiencies.

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is the most common liver disease with a broad spectrum of liver injury. Oxidant stress is believed to be the pathogenesis of NAFLD as the "second hit". Hydrogen peroxide is widely used as an oxidant reagent to induce the oxidant injury of cells and larval zebrafish. Recently, cichoric acid is being studied extensively for its obesity attenuating, hepatic steatosis reduction and anti-oxidant effects. In this study, to identify whether CRA could protect the H2O2 induced oxidant injury via anti-oxidant impact by using L02 and HepG2 hepatocytes as in vitro and larval zebrafish as in vivo injury models, and evaluated the protective and anti-oxidant effects of CRA by pretreated it on both in vitro and in vivo models. CRA was found to reduce the production of ROS and MDA, activate the anti-oxidant enzymes SOD and GSH-px, and pathways Keap1-Nrf2 and HO-1. These results demonstrated that CRA might protect the liver injury by its anti-oxidant effect, which could be a potential therapeutic agent of NAFLD.

Abstract Ethnopharmacological relevance Tibetan medicine has been practiced for 3800 years. Anzhijinhua San (AZJHS), which is a traditional Tibetan medicine, has been effective in the treatment of indigestion, anorexia and cold diarrhea. However, the effects of AZJHS on allergic diarrhea have not been reported. Aim of the study The aim of the present study was to elucidate the effect of AZJHS on experimental ovalbumin-induced diarrhea and elucidate its possible mechanism. Materials and methods Female BALB/c mice were sensitized by intraperitoneal injection with 50 μg ovalbumin (OVA) and 1 mg alum in saline twice during a 2-week period. From day 28, mice were orally challenged with OVA (50 mg) every other day for a total of ten times. AZJHS (46.8 and 468.0 mg/kg) was orally administered every other day from day 0–46. Food allergy symptoms were evaluated. OVA- specific IgE, 5-HT and its metabolites in serum were determined. Immunohistochemical and histopathology were performed in gastrointestinal tract tissues. 5-HT-related gene expression was assayed in the colon. Results Severe symptoms of allergic diarrhea were observed in the model group (diarrhea, anaphylactic response, and rectal temperature). AZJHS (46.8 and 468.0 mg/kg) significantly reduced mouse diarrhea and significantly prevented the increases in OVA-specific IgE levels (P < 0.05), which challenge with OVA. AZJHS (46.8 and 468.0 mg/kg) significantly prevented the increases in 5-HT-positive cells. The nuclei of EC cells in the AZJHS (46.8 and 468.0 mg/kg) group increased in size and the secretory granules were fewer in number compared with those in the model group. AZJHS (46.8 and 468.0 mg/kg) significantly increased the relative fold changes of 5-HTP and 5-HT compared with the model group. The mRNA expression of the serotonin transporter (Sert) and serotonin receptor 3A (Htr3a) was significantly decreased after the 10th challenge with OVA, and AZJHS (46.8 and 468.0 mg/kg) significantly increased these levels. Conclusions We demonstrated that the administration of AZJHS attenuated OVA-induced diarrhea by regulating the serotonin pathway. These results indicated that AZJHS may be a potential candidate as an anti-allergic diarrhea agent. Graphical abstract fx1 [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]