Peganum Harmala L. Extract Reduces Oxidative Stress and Improves Symptoms in 6-Hydroxydopamine-Induced Parkinson’s Disease in Rats

Document Type : Research article


1 Razi Herbal Medicines Research Center, Lorestan University of Medical Sciences

2 Department of Biology, Payam Noor University

3 Department of Pharmacology, School of Medicine, Shahed University

4 Associate Prof. Dept. Pharmacology, Shahid Beheshti Univ. Med. Sci.


Parkinson’s disease is one of the most common neurodegenerative disorders.  There are many documents about the effects of oxidative stress in Parkinson’s disease etiology. Angiotensin II activates NADPH dependent oxidases and causes superoxides formation.  Peganum harmala L. extract, which has angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitory effect, is considered to evaluate oxidative stress inhibition and Parkinson's disease improvement.
Male rats weighting 200-250 g were divided into 5 groups: Control, Neurotoxin (injection of 6-hydroxydopamine into left hemisphere substantia nigra), Peganum harmala's seedsaqueous extract (10 mg/kg) and captopril (5 mg/kg).  Peganum harmala and captopril were injected intraperitonealy -144, -120, -96, -72, -48, -24, -2, 4 and 24 h relative to 6-hydroxydopamine injection time. Muscle stiffness, apomorphine induced unilateral rotation,amount of brain's protein oxidation and lipid peroxidation, ACE activity and histology of substantia nigra were assayed in all groups.
Peganum harmala improved Muscle stiffness and one-direction rotation behavior significantly. It also reduced brain's lipid and protein oxidation levels in neurotoxin-injected rats significantly. In Peganum harmala group compared to control group, brain's ACE activity was significantly inhibited. In histological study, Peganum harmala prevented degeneration of dopaminergic neurons, too.
In conclusion, aqueous extract of Peganum harmala could prevent symptoms and reduced oxidative stress markers in rats with Parkinson’s disease induced by 6-hydroxydopamine.


Main Subjects