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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012, Article ID 194790, 11 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/194790
Research Article

Neuroprotective Effect of Uncaria rhynchophylla in Kainic Acid-Induced Epileptic Seizures by Modulating Hippocampal Mossy Fiber Sprouting, Neuron Survival, Astrocyte Proliferation, and S100B Expression

1Department of Neurology, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung 40402, Taiwan
2Graduate Institute of Acupuncture Science, China Medical University, Taichung 40402, Taiwan
3Acupuncture Research Center, China Medical University, Taichung 40402, Taiwan
4School of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University, Taichung 40402, Taiwan
5Department of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung 40402, Taiwan

Received 1 April 2011; Revised 13 May 2011; Accepted 16 May 2011

Academic Editor: Ki-Wan Oh

Copyright © 2012 Chung-Hsiang Liu 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.

Abstract

Uncaria rhynchophylla (UR), which is a traditional Chinese medicine, has anticonvulsive effect in our previous studies, and the cellular mechanisms behind this are still little known. Because of this, we wanted to determine the importance of the role of UR on kainic acid- (KA-) induced epilepsy. Oral UR for 6 weeks can successfully attenuate the onset of epileptic seizure in animal tests. Hippocampal mossy fiber sprouting dramatically decreased, while neuronal survival increased with UR treatment in hippocampal CA1 and CA3 areas. Furthermore, oral UR for 6 weeks significantly attenuated the overexpression of astrocyte proliferation and S100B proteins but not γ-aminobutyric acid A (GABAA) receptors. These results indicate that oral UR for 6 weeks can successfully attenuate mossy fiber sprouting, astrocyte proliferation, and S100B protein overexpression and increase neuronal survival in KA-induced epileptic rat hippocampus