Original Article

A new coumarin derivative, IMM-H004, attenuates okadaic acid-induced spatial memory impairment in rats

Xiu-yun SONG, Ying-ying WANG, Shi-feng CHU, Jin-feng HU, Peng-fei YANG, Wei ZUO, Lian-kun SONG, Shuai ZHANG, Nai-hong CHEN
DOI: 10.1038/aps.2015.132


Aim: A novel coumarin derivative 7-hydroxy-5-methoxy-4-methyl-3-(4-methylpiperazin-1-yl)-coumarin (IMM-H004) has shown antiapoptotic, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective activities. In this study we investigated the effects of IMM-H004 on spatial memory in rats treated with okadaic acid (OKA), which was used to imitate Alzheimer’s disease (AD)-like symptoms.
Methods: SD rats were administered IMM-H004 (8 mg·kg-1·d-1, ig) or donepezil (positive control, 1 mg·kg-1·d-1, ig) for 25 d. On d 8 and 9, OKA (200 ng) was microinjected into the right ventricle. Morris water maze test was used to evaluate the spatial memory impairments. Tau and β-amyloid (Aβ) pathology in the hippocampus was detected using Western blot and immunohistochemistry. TUNEL staining was used to detect cell apoptosis.
Results: OKA-treated rats showed significant impairments of spatial memory in Morris water maze test, which were largely reversed by administration of IMM-H004 or donepezil. Furthermore, OKA-treated rats exhibited significantly increased phosphorylation of tau, deposits of Aβ protein and cell apoptosis in the hippocampus, which were also reversed by administration of IMM-H004 or donepezil.
Conclusion: Administration of IMM-H004 or donepezil protects rats against OKA-induced spatial memory impairments via attenuating tau or Aβ pathology. Thus, IMM-H004 may be developed as a therapeutic agent for the treatment of AD.
Keywords: Alzheimer’s disease; coumarin; IMM-H004; donepezil; okadaic acid; memory impairment; Morris water maze test; tau; Aβ

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