Amelioration of apoptotic events in the skeletal muscle of intra-nigrally rotenone-infused Parkinsonian rats by Morinda citrifolia – up-regulation of Bcl-2 and blockage of cytochrome c release
Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurodegenerative movement disorder with the cardinal symptoms of bradykinesia, resting tremor, rigidity, and postural instability, which lead to abnormal movements and lack of activity, which in turn cause muscular damage. Even though studies have been carried out to elucidate the causative factors that lead to muscular damage in Parkinson's disease, apoptotic events that occur in the skeletal muscle and a therapeutical approach to culminate the muscular damage have not been extensively studied. Thus, this study evaluates the impact of rotenone-induced SNPc lesions on skeletal muscle apoptosis and the efficacy of an ethyl acetate extract of Morinda citrifolia in safeguarding the myocytes. Biochemical assays along with apoptotic markers studied by immunoblot and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction in the current study revealed that the supplementation of Morinda citrifolia significantly reverted alterations in both biochemical and histological parameters in rotenone-infused PD rats. Treatment with Morinda citrifolia also reduced the expression of pro-apoptotic proteins Bax, caspase-3 and caspase-9 and blocked the release of cytochrome c from mitochondria induced by rotenone. In addition, it augmented the expression of Bcl2 both transcriptionally and translationally. Thus, this preliminary study paves a way to show that the antioxidant and anti-apoptotic activities of Morinda citrifolia can be exploited to alleviate skeletal muscle damage induced by Parkinsonism.