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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 937568, 9 pages
Research Article

Ceftriaxone, a Beta-Lactam Antibiotic, Modulates Apoptosis Pathways and Oxidative Stress in a Rat Model of Neuropathic Pain

1Department of Pharmacology and Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, Sabzevar University of Medical Sciences, Sabzevar, Iran
2Department of Pharmacology, Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Center, School of Pharmacy, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran
3Department of Biotechnology, Pharmaceutical Research Center, School of Pharmacy, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran
4Pharmaceutical Research Center, Pharmacodynamy and Toxicology Department, School of Pharmacy, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, P.O. Box 1365-91775, Vakilabad Boulevard, Mashhad, Iran

Received 23 February 2014; Revised 13 May 2014; Accepted 13 May 2014; Published 16 June 2014

Academic Editor: Livio Luongo

Copyright © 2014 Bahareh Amin et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Purpose. In our previous study, ceftriaxone, a beta-lactam antibiotic, elicited antinociceptive effects in the chronic constriction injury (CCI) of neuropathic pain. In this study, we assessed apoptosis and oxidative stress in the spinal cord of neuropathic rats treated with ceftriaxone. Methods. 45 male Wistar rats were divided as naïve, sham, normal saline-treated CCI rats, and CCI animals treated with the effective dose of ceftriaxone. Involvement of Bax, Bcl2, and caspases 3 and 9, important contributors of programmed cell death (apoptosis), was determined using western blotting at days 3 and 7. The markers of oxidative stress including malondialdehyde (MDA) and reduced glutathione (GSH) were measured on days 3 and 7. Results. Increased Bax/Bcl2 ratio and cleaved active forms of caspases 3 and 9 were observed in the spinal cord of CCI rats on day 3. Ceftriaxone attenuated the increased levels of Bax and cleaved forms of caspases 3 and 9, while it increased Bcl2 levels. Bax and active forms of caspases declined by day 7. Consequently, comparison among groups showed no difference at this time. CCI enhanced MDA and decreased GSH on days 3 and 7, while ceftriaxone protected against the CCI-induced oxidative stress. Conclusion. Our results suggest that ceftriaxone, an upregulator/activator of GLT1, could concomitantly reduce oxidative stress and apoptosis and producing its new analogs lacking antimicrobial activity may represent a novel approach for neuropathic pain treatment.