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Immunomodulatory protein from Ganoderma microsporum protects against oxidative damages and cognitive impairments after traumatic brain injury 2022-05-13


A traumatic brain injury (TBI) causes abnormal proliferation of neuroglial cells, and over-release of glutamate induces oxidative stress and inflammation and leads to neuronal death, memory deficits, and even death if the condition is severe. There is currently no effective treatment for TBI. Recent interests have focused on the benefits of supplements or natural products like Ganoderma. Studies have indicated that immunomodulatory protein from Ganoderma microsporum (GMI) inhibits oxidative stress in lung cancer cells A549 and induces cancer cell death by causing intracellular autophagy. However, no evidence has shown the application of GMI on TBI. Thus, this study addressed whether GMI could be used to prevent or treat TBI through its anti-inflammation and antioxidative effects. We used glutamate-induced excitotoxicity as in vitro model and penetrating brain injury as in vivo model of TBI. We found that GMI inhibits the generation of intracellular reactive oxygen species and reduces neuronal death in cortical neurons against glutamate excitotoxicity. In neurite injury assay, GMI promotes neurite regeneration, the length of the regenerated neurite was even longer than that of the control group. The animal data show that GMI alleviates TBI-induced spatial memory deficits, expedites the restoration of the injured areas, induces the secretion of brain-derived neurotrophic factors, increases the superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD-1) and lowers the astroglial proliferation. It is the first paper to apply GMI to brain-injured diseases and confirms that GMI reduces oxidative stress caused by TBI and improves neurocognitive function. Moreover, the effects show that prevention is better than treatment. Thus, this study provides a potential treatment in naturopathy against TBI.