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Pergularia daemia alters epileptogenesis and attenuates cognitive impairment in kainate-treated mice: Insight into anti-inflammatory mechanisms

Background: About 60% of temporal lobe epilepsies are drug resistant. Thus, medicinal plants are sources of new antiepileptic drugs. Pergularia daemia is used in Cameroon to treat pain, fever, arthritis, infections, and temporal lobe epilepsy. However, there are no scientific reports on the anti-inflammatory activity of P. daemia during epileptogenesis.

Objective: This study aimed at determining the involvement of the anti-inflammatory activity of P. daemia during epileptogenesis in kainate-treated mice.

Methods: Status epilepticus was induced in mice with kainate (15 mg/kg; i.p.). Those developing status epilepticus for 2 h were divided and treated once daily, for two weeks, with distilled water (10 ml/kg; p.o.), P. daemia extract (4.9, 12.3, 24.5, and 49 mg/kg; p.o.), and sodium valproate (300 mg/kg; i.p.) or aspirin (20 mg/kg; i.p.). One hour following the last treatment, the susceptibility of mice to seizures was assessed during epileptogenesis with pentylenetetrazole (40 mg/kg; i.p.). Then, mice were subjected to morris water maze, object recognition, and open-field tests. After completion of behavioral analysis, hippocampi and blood were collected for pro-inflammatory markers or histological analysis.

Results: The extract of P. daemia at all doses significantly reduced the latency and duration of seizures and increased seizure score. P. daemia (24.5 and 49 mg/kg) also prevented SE-induced cognitive impairment. Furthermore, the extract (24.5 and 49 mg/kg) markedly decreased tumor necrosis factor-α, interleukins-1β, and -6 levels in hippocampi or serum. Histological analysis revealed that P. daemia attenuated neuronal loss in CA1 and CA3 areas of the hippocampus.

Conclusions: These findings suggest that anti-inflammatory mechanisms are involved in the antiepileptogenic effect of P. daemia extract. This justifies therefore its use to treat epilepsy and inflammation in Cameroon traditional folk medicine.

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