Potential Neuroprotection of Wheat Alkylresorcinols in Hippocampal Neurons via Nrf2/ARE Pathway
5-n-alkylresorcinols (ARs) are abundant in wheat bran and potentially antioxidative, although the neuroprotective mechanism is not fully understood. The neuroprotective effect of wheat bran ARs on the H2O2-induced neuronal cells and the relationship between neuroprotection and the nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2)/antioxidant-response element (ARE) pathway was investigated in this study. Seven homologs were identified in the purified ARs by high-performance liquid chromatography − tandem mass spectrometry. Pre-treatment with 80 μg/mL ARs alleviated 23% HT22 cell death and up-regulation of intracellular reactive oxygen species level and malondialdehyde under the H2O2 stimulation. The neuroprotection was proven by the increase in the Nrf2 nuclear location and up-regulation of mRNA and protein expressions of heme oxygenase-1, NAD(P)H quinone dehydrogenase 1, glutamate-cysteine ligase catalytic subunit, and glutamate-cysteine ligase modifier subunit l. Wheat bran ARs displayed neuroprotective function, possibly by promoting the endogenous antioxidant defense system. ARs may be regarded as a functional food ingredient for preventing neurodegenerative diseases in the future.