Fullerenols and glucosamine fullerenes reduce infarct volume and cerebral inflammation after ischemic stroke in normotensive and hypertensive rats
Cerebral inflammation plays a crucial role in the pathophysiology of ischemic stroke and is involved in all stages of the ischemic cascade. Fullerene derivatives, such as fullerenol (OH-F) are radical scavengers acting as neuroprotective agents while glucosamine (GlcN) attenuates cerebral inflammation after stroke. We created novel glucosamine-fullerene conjugates (GlcN-F) to combine their protective effects and compared them to OH-F regarding stroke-induced cerebral inflammation and cellular damage. Fullerene derivatives or vehicle was administered intravenously in normotensive Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats and spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) immediately after transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (tMCAO). Infarct size was determined at day 5 and neurological outcome at days 1 and 5 after tMCAO. CD68- and NeuN-staining were performed to determine immunoreactivity and neuronal survival respectively. Cytokine and toll like receptor 4 (TLR-4) expression was assessed using quantitative real-time PCR. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed a significant reduction of infarct volume in both, WKY and SHR that were treated with fullerene derivatives. Treated rats showed an amelioration of neurological symptoms as both OH-F and GlcN-F prevented neuronal loss in the perilesional area. Cerebral immunoreactivity was reduced in treated WKY and SHR. Expression of IL-1β and TLR-4 was attenuated in OH-F-treated WKY rats. In conclusion, OH-F and GlcN-F lead to a reduction of cellular damage and inflammation after stroke, rendering these compounds attractive therapeutics for stroke.