Selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRI) have been widely used in treatment of major depression because of their efficacy, safety, and tolerability. Escitalopram, an SSRI, is known to decrease oxidative stress in chronic stress animal models. In the present study, we examined the neuroprotective effects of pre- and post-treatments with 20. mg/kg and 30. mg/kg escitalopram in the gerbil hippocampal CA1 region (CA1) after transient cerebral ischemia. Pre-treatment with escitalopram protected against ischemia-induced neuronal death in the CA1 after ischemia/reperfusion (I/R). Post-treatment with 30. mg/kg, not 20. mg/kg, escitalopram had a neuroprotective effect against ischemic damage. In addition, 20. mg/kg pre- and 30. mg/kg post-treatments with escitalopram increased brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) protein levels in the ischemic CA1 compared to vehicle-treated ischemia animals. In addition, 20. mg/kg pre- and 30. mg/kg post-treatments with escitalopram reduced microglia activation and decreased 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal and Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase immunoreactivity and their levels in the ischemic CA1 compared to vehicle-treated ischemia animals after transient cerebral ischemia. In conclusion, these results indicated that pre- and post-treatments with escitalopram can protect against ischemia-induced neuronal death in the CA1 induced by transient cerebral ischemic damage by increase of BDNF as well as decrease of microglia activation and oxidative stress.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Developmental Neuroscience