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Find video protocols related to scientific articles indexed in Pubmed.
Melatonin prevents cell death and mitochondrial dysfunction via a SIRT1-dependent mechanism during ischemic-stroke in mice.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 11-05-2014
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Silent information regulator 1 (SIRT1), a type of histone deacetylase, is a highly effective therapeutic target for protection against ischemia reperfusion (IR) injury (IRI). Previous studies showed that melatonin preserves SIRT1 expression in neuronal cells of newborn rats after hypoxia-ischemia. However, the definite role of SIRT1 in the protective effect of melatonin against cerebral IRI in adult has not been explored. In this study, the brain of adult mice were subjected to IRI. Prior to this procedure, the mice were given intraperitoneal with or without the SIRT1 inhibitor, EX527. Melatonin conferred a cerebralprotective effect, as shown by reduced infarct volume, lowered brain edema and increased neurological scores. The melatonin-induced up-regulation of SIRT1 was also associated with an increase in the anti-apoptotic factor, Bcl2, and a reduction in the pro-apoptotic factor Bax. Moreover, melatonin resulted in a well-preserved mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP), mitochondria Complex I activity, mitochondrial cytochrome c level while it reduced cytosolic cytochrome c level. However, the melatonin-elevated mitochondrial function was reversed by EX527 treatment. In summary, our results demonstrate that melatonin treatment attenuates cerebral IRI by reducing IR-induced mitochondrial dysfunction through the activation of SIRT1 signaling. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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Melatonin enhances plant growth and abiotic stress tolerance in soybean plants.
J. Exp. Bot.
PUBLISHED: 10-10-2014
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Melatonin is a well-known agent that plays multiple roles in animals. Its possible function in plants is less clear. In the present study, we tested the effect of melatonin (N-acetyl-5-methoxytryptamine) on soybean growth and development. Coating seeds with melatonin significantly promoted soybean growth as judged from leaf size and plant height. This enhancement was also observed in soybean production and their fatty acid content. Melatonin increased pod number and seed number, but not 100-seed weight. Melatonin also improved soybean tolerance to salt and drought stresses. Transcriptome analysis revealed that salt stress inhibited expressions of genes related to binding, oxidoreductase activity/process, and secondary metabolic processes. Melatonin up-regulated expressions of the genes inhibited by salt stress, and hence alleviated the inhibitory effects of salt stress on gene expressions. Further detailed analysis of the affected pathways documents that melatonin probably achieved its promotional roles in soybean through enhancement of genes involved in cell division, photosynthesis, carbohydrate metabolism, fatty acid biosynthesis, and ascorbate metabolism. Our results demonstrate that melatonin has significant potential for improvement of soybean growth and seed production. Further study should uncover more about the molecular mechanisms of melatonin's function in soybeans and other crops.
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Melatonin feedback on clock genes: A theory involving the proteasome.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 09-29-2014
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The expression of 'clock' genes occurs in all tissues, but especially in the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN) of the hypothalamus, groups of neurons in the brain that regulate circadian rhythms. Melatonin is secreted by the pineal gland in a circadian manner as influenced by the SCN. There is also considerable evidence that melatonin, in turn, acts on the SCN directly influencing the circadian 'clock' mechanisms. The most direct route by which melatonin could reach the SCN would be via the cerebrospinal fluid of the third ventricle. Melatonin could also reach the pars tuberalis (PT) of the pituitary, another melatonin-sensitive tissue, via this route. The major 'clock' genes include the Period genes, Per1 and Per2, the Cryptochrome genes, Cry1 and Cry2, the Clock (Circadian Locomotor Output Cycles Kaput) gene, and the Bmal1 (Aryl hydrocarbon receptor nuclear translocator-like) gene. Clock and Bmal1 heterodimers act on E-Box components of the promoters of the Per and Cry genes to stimulate transcription. A negative feedback loop between the cryptochrome proteins and the nucleus allows the Cry and Per proteins to regulate their own transcription. A cycle of ubiquitination and deubiquitination controls the levels of CRY protein degraded by the proteasome and, hence, the amount of protein available for feedback. Thus it provides a post-translational component to the circadian clock mechanism. BMAL1 also stimulates transcription of REV-ERB?, and, in turn, is also partially regulated by negative feedback by REV-ERB?. In the 'black widow' model of transcription, proteasomes destroy transcription factors that are needed only for a particular period of time. In the model proposed herein, the interaction of melatonin and the proteasome is required to adjust the SCN clock to changes in the environmental photoperiod. In particular, we predict that melatonin inhibition of the proteasome interferes with negative feedback loops (CRY/PER and REV-ERB?) on Bmal1 transcription genes in both the SCN and PT. Melatonin inhibition of the proteasome would also tend to stabilize BMAL1 protein itself in the SCN, particularly at night when melatonin is naturally elevated. Melatonin inhibition of the proteasome could account for the effects of melatonin on circadian rhythms associated with molecular timing genes. The interaction of melatonin with the proteasome in the hypothalamus also provides a model for explaining the dramatic 'time of day' effect of melatonin injections on reproductive status of seasonal breeders. Finally, the model predicts that a proteasome inhibitor such as bortezomib would modify circadian rhythms in a manner similar to melatonin. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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Ebola virus disease: potential use of melatonin as a treatment.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 09-22-2014
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The purpose of this report is to emphasize the potential utility for the use of melatonin in the treatment of individuals who are infected with the Ebola virus. The pathological changes associated with an Ebola infection include, most notably, endothelial disruption, disseminated intravascular coagulation and multiple organ hemorrhage. Melatonin has been shown to target these alterations. Numerous similarities between Ebola virus infection and septic shock have been recognized for more than a decade. Moreover, melatonin has been successfully employed for the treatment of sepsis in many experimental and clinical studies. Based on these factors, as the number of treatments currently available is limited and the useable products are not abundant, the use of melatonin for the treatment of Ebola virus infection is encouraged. Additionally, melatonin has a high safety profile, is readily available and can be orally self-administered; thus, the use of melatonin is compatible with the large scale of this serious outbreak.
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Comparative physiological, metabolomic, and transcriptomic analyses reveal mechanisms of improved abiotic stress resistance in bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L). Pers.] by exogenous melatonin.
J. Exp. Bot.
PUBLISHED: 09-17-2014
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Melatonin (N-acetyl-5-methoxytryptamine), a well-known animal hormone, is also involved in plant development and abiotic stress responses. In this study, it is shown that exogenous application of melatonin conferred improved salt, drought, and cold stress resistances in bermudagrass. Moreover, exogenous melatonin treatment alleviated reactive oxygen species (ROS) burst and cell damage induced by abiotic stress; this involved activation of several antioxidants. Additionally, melatonin-pre-treated plants exhibited higher concentrations of 54 metabolites, including amino acids, organic acids, sugars, and sugar alcohols, than non-treated plants under abiotic stress conditions. Genome-wide transcriptomic profiling identified 3933 transcripts (2361 up-regulated and 1572 down-regulated) that were differentially expressed in melatonin-treated plants versus controls. Pathway and gene ontology (GO) term enrichment analyses revealed that genes involved in nitrogen metabolism, major carbohydrate metabolism, tricarboxylic acid (TCA)/org transformation, transport, hormone metabolism, metal handling, redox, and secondary metabolism were over-represented after melatonin pre-treatment. Taken together, this study provides the first evidence of the protective roles of exogenous melatonin in the bermudagrass response to abiotic stresses, partially via activation of antioxidants and modulation of metabolic homeostasis. Notably, metabolic and transcriptomic analyses showed that the underlying mechanisms of melatonin could involve major reorientation of photorespiratory and carbohydrate and nitrogen metabolism.
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Melatonin: exceeding expectations.
Physiology (Bethesda)
PUBLISHED: 09-03-2014
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Melatonin is a small, highly conserved indole with numerous receptor-mediated and receptor-independent actions. Receptor-dependent functions include circadian rhythm regulation, sleep, and cancer inhibition. The receptor-independent actions relate to melatonin's ability to function in the detoxification of free radicals, thereby protecting critical molecules from the destructive effects of oxidative stress under conditions of ischemia/reperfusion injury (stroke, heart attack), ionizing radiation, and drug toxicity, among others. Melatonin has numerous applications in physiology and medicine.
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INDOLE-3-ACETIC ACID INDUCIBLE 17 positively modulates natural leaf senescence through melatonin-mediated pathway in Arabidopsis.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 09-02-2014
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Melatonin (N-acetyl-5-methoxytryptamine) functions as a ubiquitous modulator in multiple plant developmental processes and various stress responses. However, the involvement of melatonin in natural leaf senescence and the underlying molecular mechanism in Arabidopsis remain unclear. In this study, we found that the endogenous melatonin level was significantly induced in a developmental stage-dependent manner, and exogenous melatonin treatment delayed natural leaf senescence in Arabidopsis. The expression level of AUXIN RESISTANT 3 (AXR3)/INDOLE-3-ACETIC ACID INDUCIBLE 17 (IAA17) was significantly downregulated by exogenous melatonin treatment and decreased with developmental age in Arabidopsis. Further investigation indicated that AtIAA17-overexpressing plants showed early leaf senescence with lower chlorophyll content in rosette leaves compared with wild-type plants, while AtIAA17 knockout mutants displayed delayed leaf senescence with higher chlorophyll content. Notably, exogenous melatonin-delayed leaf senescence was largely alleviated in AtIAA17-overexpressing plants, and AtIAA17-activated senescence-related SENESCENCE 4 (SEN4) and SENESCENCE-ASSOCIATED GENE 12 (SAG12) transcripts might have contributed to the process of natural leaf senescence. Taken together, the results indicate that AtIAA17 is a positive modulator of natural leaf senescence and provides direct link between melatonin and AtIAA17 in the process of natural leaf senescence in Arabidopsis.
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A review of melatonin as a suitable antioxidant against myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury and clinical heart diseases.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 08-16-2014
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Cardiac tissue loss is one of the most important factors leading to the unsatisfactory recovery even after treatment of ischemic heart disease. Melatonin, a circadian molecule with marked antioxidant properties, protects against ischemia-reperfusion (IR) injury. In particular, the myocardial protection of melatonin is substantial. We initially focus on the cardioprotective effects of melatonin in myocardial IR. These studies showed how melatonin preserves the microstructure of the cardiomyocyte and reduces myocardial IR injury. Thereafter, downstream signaling pathways of melatonin were summarized including Janus kinase 2/signal transducers and activators of transcription 3, nitric oxide-synthase, and nuclear factor erythroid 2 related factor 2. Herein, we propose the clinical applications of melatonin in several ischemic heart diseases. Collectively, the information summarized in this review (based on in vitro, animal, and human studies) should serve as a comprehensive reference for the action of melatonin in cardioprotection and hopefully will contribute to the design of future experimental research.
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Local melatoninergic system as the protector of skin integrity.
Int J Mol Sci
PUBLISHED: 08-15-2014
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The human skin is not only a target for the protective actions of melatonin, but also a site of melatonin synthesis and metabolism, suggesting an important role for a local melatoninergic system in protection against ultraviolet radiation (UVR) induced damages. While melatonin exerts many effects on cell physiology and tissue homeostasis via membrane bound melatonin receptors, the strong protective effects of melatonin against the UVR-induced skin damage including DNA repair/protection seen at its high (pharmocological) concentrations indicate that these are mainly mediated through receptor-independent mechanisms or perhaps through activation of putative melatonin nuclear receptors. The destructive effects of the UVR are significantly counteracted or modulated by melatonin in the context of a complex intracutaneous melatoninergic anti-oxidative system with UVR-enhanced or UVR-independent melatonin metabolites. Therefore, endogenous intracutaneous melatonin production, together with topically-applied exogenous melatonin or metabolites would be expected to represent one of the most potent anti-oxidative defense systems against the UV-induced damage to the skin. In summary, we propose that melatonin can be exploited therapeutically as a protective agent or as a survival factor with anti-genotoxic properties or as a "guardian" of the genome and cellular integrity with clinical applications in UVR-induced pathology that includes carcinogenesis and skin aging.
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Melatonin as a proteasome inhibitor. Is there any clinical evidence?
Life Sci.
PUBLISHED: 07-15-2014
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Proteasome inhibitors and melatonin are both intimately involved in the regulation of major signal transduction proteins including p53, cyclin p27, transcription factor NF-?B, apoptotic factors Bax and Bim, caspase 3, caspase 9, anti-apoptotic factor Bcl-2, TRAIL, NRF2 and transcription factor beta-catenin. The fact that these factors are shared targets of the proteasome inhibitor bortezomib and melatonin suggests the working hypothesis that melatonin is a proteasome inhibitor. Supporting this hypothesis is the fact that melatonin shares with bortezomib a selective pro-apoptotic action in cancer cells. Furthermore, both bortezomib and melatonin increase the sensitivity of human glioma cells to TRAIL-induced apoptosis. Direct evidence for melatonin inhibition of the proteasome was recently found in human renal cancer cells. We raise the issue whether melatonin should be investigated in combination with proteasome inhibitors to reduce toxicity, to reduce drug resistance, and to enhance efficacy. This may be particularly valid for hematological malignancies in which proteasome inhibitors have been shown to be useful. Further studies are necessary to determine whether the actions of melatonin on cellular signaling pathways are due to a direct inhibitory effect on the catalytic core of the proteasome, due to an inhibitory action on the regulatory particle of the proteasome, or due to an indirect effect of melatonin on phosphorylation of signal transducing factors.
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Fundamental issues related to the origin of melatonin and melatonin isomers during evolution: relation to their biological functions.
Int J Mol Sci
PUBLISHED: 07-11-2014
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Melatonin and melatonin isomers exist and/or coexist in living organisms including yeasts, bacteria and plants. The levels of melatonin isomers are significantly higher than that of melatonin in some plants and in several fermented products such as in wine and bread. Currently, there are no reports documenting the presence of melatonin isomers in vertebrates. From an evolutionary point of view, it is unlikely that melatonin isomers do not exist in vertebrates. On the other hand, large quantities of the microbial flora exist in the gut of the vertebrates. These microorganisms frequently exchange materials with the host. Melatonin isomers, which are produced by these organisms inevitably enter the host's system. The origins of melatonin and its isomers can be traced back to photosynthetic bacteria and other primitive unicellular organisms. Since some of these bacteria are believed to be the precursors of mitochondria and chloroplasts these cellular organelles may be the primary sites of melatonin production in animals or in plants, respectively. Phylogenic analysis based on its rate-limiting synthetic enzyme, serotonin N-acetyltransferase (SNAT), indicates its multiple origins during evolution. Therefore, it is likely that melatonin and its isomer are also present in the domain of archaea, which perhaps require these molecules to protect them against hostile environments including extremely high or low temperature. Evidence indicates that the initial and primary function of melatonin and its isomers was to serve as the first-line of defence against oxidative stress and all other functions were acquired during evolution either by the process of adoption or by the extension of its antioxidative capacity.
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Melatonin and atopy: role in atopic dermatitis and asthma.
Int J Mol Sci
PUBLISHED: 06-26-2014
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Melatonin may have important immunostimulatory actions in allergic diseases, in addition to its well-known antioxidant and cytoprotective effects in several inflammatory conditions. The activation of the immune system leads to free radical production associated with decreased melatonin levels and depressed antioxidant enzyme activities in several inflammatory diseases. Many skin disorders, including atopic dermatitis, are accompanied by infiltration and activation of mast cells, which release vasoactive and proinflammatory mediators. Experimental data suggest that melatonin inhibits development of atopic eczema and reduces serum total IgE and IL-4. Allergic asthma is a condition characterized by bronchial hyperresponsiveness and the presence of IgE antibodies in response to inhaled allergens; often there is also enhanced total serum IgE levels. Melatonin regulates smooth muscle tone and influences the immune response. Melatonin may, however, act as a pro-inflammatory agent in asthma leading to bronchial constriction. The safety of melatonin as a sleep-inducing agent has been confirmed in asthmatic subjects, but its routine use is not recommended in bronchial asthma. This review summarizes what is known about the role of melatonin as an immunomodulatory agent in asthma and atopic eczema.
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Beneficial effects of melatonin on bovine oocytes maturation: a mechanistic approach.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 06-20-2014
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This study was performed to investigate the effect of melatonin on bovine oocyte maturation and subsequent embryonic development in vitro. The endogenous melatonin concentration in bovine follicular fluid is approximately 10(-11) M. To examine the potential beneficial effects of melatonin on bovine oocyte maturation in vitro, germinal vesicle (GV) oocytes were incubated with different concentrations of melatonin (10(-11), 10(-9), 10(-7), 10(-5), 10(-3) M). Melatonin supplementation at suitable concentrations significantly promoted oocyte maturation. The development of embryos and the mean cell number/blastocyst produced after in vitro fertilization were remarkably improved. The most effective melatonin concentrations obtained from the studies ranged from 10(-9) to 10(-7) M. The expression of melatonin receptor MT1 and MT2 genes was identified in cumulus cells, granulosa cells, and oocytes using reverse transcription PCR, immunofluorescence, and Western blot. The mechanistic studies show that the beneficial effects of melatonin on bovine oocyte maturation are mediated via melatonin membrane receptors as the melatonin receptor agonist (IIK7) promotes this effect while the melatonin receptor antagonist (luzindole) blocks this action. Mechanistic explorations revealed that melatonin supplementation during bovine oocyte maturation significantly up-regulated the expressions of oocyte maturation-associated genes (GDF9, MARF1, and DNMT1a) and cumulus cells expansion-related gene (PTX3, HAS1/2) and that LHR1/2, EGFR are involved in signal transduction and epigenetic reprogramming. The results obtained from the studies provide new information regarding the mechanisms by which melatonin promotes bovine oocyte maturation in vitro and provide an important reference for in vitro embryo production of bovine and the human-assisted reproductive technology.
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Non-anaplastic peripheral T-cell lymphoma in children and adolescents - a retrospective analysis of the NHL-BFM study group.
Br. J. Haematol.
PUBLISHED: 06-19-2014
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Mature (peripheral) T-cell lymphoma (PTCL) other than anaplastic large cell lymphoma is a heterogeneous group of diseases and exceedingly rare in children and adolescents. Survival rates range between 46% and 85%. This study reports the disease characteristics, treatment and outcome of all patients with the diagnosis of mature TCL registered in the Berlin-Frankfurt-Munster non-Hodgkin lymphoma database between 1986 and 2012. All diagnoses were centrally reviewed and revised by clinico-pathological correlation according to the criteria of the current World Health Organization classification. Of the 69 patients originally registered as having PTCL, the diagnosis was confirmed in 38 of them. Most patients were treated with an anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL)-like therapy regimen. Patients with PTCL-not otherwise specified comprised the largest group and showed a 5-year event-free survival rate of 61 ± 11%. Patients suffering from Natural Killer/T-cell- and hepatosplenic TCL had the poorest outcome. Our results suggest that the outcomes of children with mature TCL other than ALCL depend on the subtype and are worse than in all other paediatric lymphomas. The clinical experience presented in this largest study on paediatric mature TCL may serve as basis for future collaborative international prospective clinical trials.
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Melatonin and Renal Protection: Novel Perspectives from Animal Experiments and Human Studies (review ).
Curr. Pharm. Des.
PUBLISHED: 06-18-2014
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Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a serious public health problem. Current therapies are designed to slow down progression of the disease and avoid the necessity of dialysis or kidney transplantation. CKD is characterized by chronic inflammation and progressive cell death resulting in fibrotic rebuilding of renal tissue. Melatonin, the primary product of the pineal gland, has been shown to have pluripotent protective effects in many organs and tissues. It exerts anti-hypertensive, anti-inflammatory, anti-apoptotic, and anti-remodelling actions. A principal mechanism of these numerous melatonin benefits resides in its extraordinary high efficacy as an antioxidant and scavenger protecting cells both extracellularly and in all subcellular structures. In addition to these receptor-independent actions, the effects of melatonin via specific MT-receptors may be beneficial. In several animal models of CKD, involving experimental hypertension, diabetes mellitus and various models of nephrotoxicity, melatonin reduced the oxidative burden, attenuated the chronic inflammation and limited apoptosis. These effects were associated with the reduction of proteinuria, damage of parenchymal cells and fibrosis. In humans, melatonin's chronobiological action attenuates sleep disturbances in hemodialyzed patients suffering from a relative melatonin deficiency. Moreover, melatonin reduces the oxidative burden and improves iron metabolism in hemodialyzed patients. In conclusion, the pleiotropic physiological actions of melatonin induce beneficial effects at numerous pathophysiological levels related to CKD both under experimental and clinical conditions. It is hoped that this review will prompt a large clinical trial to determine the efficacy of this nontoxic indoleamine as a potential treatment for this debilitating disease.
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Oxidative stress-mediated aging during the fetal and perinatal periods.
Oxid Med Cell Longev
PUBLISHED: 05-29-2014
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Oxidative stress is worldwide recognized as a fundamental component of the aging, a process that begins before birth. There is a critical balance between free radical generation and antioxidant defenses. Oxidative stress is caused by an imbalance between the production of free radicals and the ability of antioxidant system to detoxify them. Oxidative stress can occur early in pregnancy and continue in the postnatal period; this damage is implicated in the pathophysiology of pregnancy-related disorders, including recurrent pregnancy loss, preeclampsia and preterm premature rupture of membranes. Moreover, diseases of the neonatal period such as bronchopulmonary dysplasia, retinopathy of prematurity, necrotizing enterocolitis, and periventricular leukomalacia are related to free radical damage. The specific contribution of oxidative stress to the pathogenesis and progression of these neonatal diseases is only partially understood. This review summarizes what is known about the role of oxidative stress in pregnancy and in the pathogenesis of common disorders of the newborn, as a component of the early aging process.
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Melatonin identified in meats and other food stuffs: potentially nutritional impact.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 05-14-2014
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Melatonin has been identified in primitive photosynthetic bacteria, fungi, plants, and animals including humans. Vegetables, fruits, cereals, wine, and beers all contain melatonin. However, the melatonin content in meats has not been reported previously. Here, for the first time, we report melatonin in meats, eggs, colostrum, and in other edible food products. The levels of melatonin measured by HPLC, in lamb, beef, pork, chicken, and fish, are comparable to other food stuffs (in the range of ng/g). These levels are significantly higher than melatonin concentrations in the blood of vertebrates. As melatonin is a potent antioxidant, its presence in the meat could contribute to shelf life duration as well as preserve their quality and taste. In addition, the consumption of these foods by humans or animals could have health benefits considering the important functions of melatonin as a potent free radical scavenger and antioxidant.
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Melatonin down-regulates MDM2 gene expression and enhances p53 acetylation in MCF-7 cells.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 04-28-2014
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Compelling evidence demonstrated that melatonin increases p53 activity in cancer cells. p53 undergoes acetylation to be stabilized and activated for driving cells destined for apoptosis/growth inhibition. Over-expression of p300 induces p53 acetylation, leading to cell growth arrest by increasing p21 expression. In turn, p53 activation is mainly regulated in the nucleus by MDM2. MDM2 also acts as E3 ubiquitin ligase, promoting the proteasome-dependent p53 degradation. MDM2 entry into the nucleus is finely tuned by two different modulations: the ribosomal protein L11, acts by sequestering MDM2 in the cytosol, whereas the PI3K-AkT-dependent MDM2 phosphorylation is mandatory for MDM2 translocation across the nuclear membrane. In addition, MDM2-dependent targeting of p53 is regulated in a nonlinear fashion by MDM2/MDMX interplay. Melatonin induces both cell growth inhibition and apoptosis in MCF7 breast cancer cells. We previously reported that this effect is associated with reduced MDM2 levels and increased p53 activity. Herein, we demonstrated that melatonin drastically down-regulates MDM2 gene expression and inhibits MDM2 shuttling into the nucleus, given that melatonin increases L11 and inhibits Akt-PI3K-dependent MDM2 phosphorylation. Melatonin induces a 3-fold increase in both MDMX and p300 levels, decreasing simultaneously Sirt1, a specific inhibitor of p300 activity. Consequently, melatonin-treated cells display significantly higher values of both p53 and acetylated p53. Thus, a 15-fold increase in p21 levels was observed in melatonin-treated cancer cells. Our results provide evidence that melatonin enhances p53 acetylation by modulating the MDM2/MDMX/p300 pathway, disclosing new insights for understanding its anticancer effect.
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Melatonin improves mitochondrial function in inguinal white adipose tissue of Zücker diabetic fatty rats.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 04-08-2014
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Mitochondrial dysfunction in adipose tissue may contribute to obesity-related metabolic derangements such as type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Because mitochondria are a target for melatonin action, the goal of this study was to investigate the effects of melatonin on mitochondrial function in white (WAT) and beige inguinal adipose tissue of Zücker diabetic fatty (ZDF) rats, a model of obesity-related T2DM. In this experimental model, melatonin reduces obesity and improves the metabolic profile. At 6 wk of age, ZDF rats and lean littermates (ZL) were subdivided into two groups, each composed of four rats: control (C-ZDF and C-ZL) and treated with oral melatonin in the drinking water (10 mg/kg/day) for 6 wk (M-ZDF and M-ZL). After the treatment period, animals were sacrificed, tissues dissected, and mitochondrial function assessed in isolated organelles. Melatonin increased the respiratory control ratio (RCR) in mitochondria from white fat of both lean (by 26.5%, P < 0.01) and obese (by 34.5%, P < 0.01) rats mainly through a reduction of proton leaking component of respiration (state 4) (28% decrease in ZL, P < 0.01 and 35% in ZDF, P < 0.01). However, melatonin treatment lowered the RCR in beige mitochondria of both lean (by 7%, P < 0.05) and obese (by 13%, P < 0.05) rats by maintaining high rates of uncoupled respiration. Melatonin also lowered mitochondrial oxidative status by reducing nitrite levels and by increasing superoxide dismutase activity. Moreover, melatonin treatment also caused a profound inhibition of Ca-induced opening of mPTP in isolated mitochondria from both types of fat, white and beige, in both lean and obese rats. These results demonstrate that chronic oral melatonin improves mitochondrial respiration and reduces the oxidative status and susceptibility to apoptosis in white and beige adipocytes. These melatonin effects help to prevent mitochondrial dysfunction and thereby to improve obesity-related metabolic disorders such as diabetes and dyslipidemia of ZDF rats.
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Melatonin reduces cardiac morbidity and markers of myocardial ischemia after elective abdominal aortic aneurism repair: a randomized, placebo-controlled, clinical trial.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 04-04-2014
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The aim was to examine the effect of perioperative melatonin treatment on clinical cardiac morbidity and markers of myocardial ischemia in patients undergoing elective surgery for abdominal aortic aneurism. Reperfusion injury results in increased cardiac morbidity in patients undergoing surgery for abdominal aortic aneurisms (AAA). A randomized, placebo-controlled, clinical trial including patients undergoing surgery for AAA was performed. The patients received by infusion over a 2-hr period either, 50 mg melatonin or placebo intra-operatively, and 10 mg melatonin or placebo orally, the first three nights after surgery. Postoperative cardiac morbidity was registered, and blood samples for analysis of troponin-I (TpI) were collected preoperatively, and at 5 min, 6, 24, 48, 72, and 96 hr after clamp removal/recirculation of the first leg. Continuous measurement of ST-segment depression was performed by Holter monitoring. A total of 26 patients received melatonin, while 24 received placebo. A significant reduction in cardiac morbidity was seen in the melatonin-treated patients compared with those given placebo [4% versus 29% (P = 0.02)]. Five patients (19%) who received melatonin had increased TpI levels in the postoperative period compared with 12 patients (50%) who were given placebo (P = 0.036). The median number of ST-segment deviations was less in the melatonin-treated patients compared with the placebo group [median 1 (range 0-4) versus 6 (range 0-13) (P = 0.01)], but no differences were found in the duration of ST-segment deviations. Melatonin treatment in the perioperative period decreased clinical cardiac morbidity as well as the occurrence of myocardial ischemia after abdominal aortic aneurism repair.
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Melatonin synthesis impairment as a new deleterious outcome of diabetes-derived hyperglycemia.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 04-02-2014
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Melatonin is a neurohormone that works as a nighttime signal for circadian integrity and health maintenance. It is crucial for energy metabolism regulation, and the diabetes effects on its synthesis are unresolved. Using diverse techniques that included pineal microdialysis and ultrahigh-performance liquid chromatography, the present data show a clear acute and sustained melatonin synthesis reduction in diabetic rats as a result of pineal metabolism impairment that is unrelated to cell death. Hyperglycemia is the main cause of several diabetic complications, and its consequences in terms of melatonin production were assessed. Here, we show that local high glucose (HG) concentration is acutely detrimental to pineal melatonin synthesis in rats both in vivo and in vitro. The clinically depressive action of high blood glucose concentration in melatonin levels was also observed in type 1 diabetes patients who presented a negative correlation between hyperglycemia and 6-sulfatoxymelatonin excretion. Additionally, high-mean-glycemia type 1 diabetes patients presented lower 6-sulfatoxymelatonin levels when compared to control subjects. Although further studies are needed to fully clarify the mechanisms, the present results provide evidence that high circulating glucose levels interfere with pineal melatonin production. Given the essential role played by melatonin as a powerful antioxidant and in the control of energy homeostasis, sleep and biological rhythms and knowing that optimal glycemic control is usually an issue for patients with diabetes, melatonin supplementation may be considered as an additional tool to the current treatment.
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A review of the melatonin functions in zebrafish physiology.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 04-01-2014
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Melatonin is part of the evolutionary conserved highly functional network in vertebrates. It plays a central role in the adaptative behavior of the animal to the environment, including entrainment of daily and annual physiological rhythms, reproductive behavior, food intake, locomotor activity, growth, and breeding performance. In zebrafish, apart from its synchronizing capabilities, melatonin seems to have a major role in multiple physiological processes. Extensive knowledge of its genome and the identification of a series of genes with the same functions as those in humans, the relative ease of obtaining mutants, and the similarities between zebrafish and human pathologies make it an excellent experimental model organism of human diseases. Moreover, it is a common experimental species because of easy handling, breeding, and developmental control. Among other pathophysiologies, zebrafish are now used in studies of neurodegeneration and neurological diseases, endocrine diseases, behavior, muscular dystrophies, developmental alterations, circadian rhythms, and drugs screening. The purpose of this review was to update the current knowledge on the synthesis and biological functions of melatonin in zebrafish, keeping in mind its relevance not only in the physiology of the animal, but also in pathophysiological conditions.
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Melatonin and its metabolites ameliorate ultraviolet B-induced damage in human epidermal keratinocytes.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 03-28-2014
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We investigated the protective effects of melatonin and its metabolites: 6-hydroxymelatonin (6-OHM), N1-acetyl-N2-formyl-5-methoxykynuramine (AFMK), N-acetylserotonin (NAS), and 5-methoxytryptamine (5-MT) in human keratinocytes against a range of doses (25, 50, and 75 mJ/cm2) of ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation. There was significant reduction in the generation of reactive oxygen species (50-60%) when UVB-exposed keratinocytes were treated with melatonin or its derivatives. Similarly, melatonin and its metabolites reduced the nitrite and hydrogen peroxide levels that were induced by UVB as early as 30 min after the exposure. Moreover, melatonin and its metabolites enhanced levels of reduced glutathione in keratinocytes within 1 hr after UVB exposure in comparison with control cells. Using proliferation assay, we observed a dose-dependent increase in viability of UVB-irradiated keratinocytes that were treated with melatonin or its derivatives after 48 hr. Using the dot-blot technique and immunofluorescent staining we also observed that melatonin and its metabolites enhanced the DNA repair capacity of UVB-induced pyrimidine photoproducts (6-4)or cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers generation in human keratinocytes. Additional evidence for induction of DNA repair in cells exposed to UVB and treated with the indole compounds was shown using the Comet assay. Finally, melatonin and its metabolites further enhanced expression of p53 phosphorylated at Ser-15 but not at Ser-46 or its nonphosphorylated form. In conclusion, melatonin, its precursor NAS, and its metabolites 6-OHM, AFMK, 5-MT, which are endogenously produced in keratinocytes, protect these cells against UVB-induced oxidative stress and DNA damage.
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Melatonin and ubiquitin: what's the connection?
Cell. Mol. Life Sci.
PUBLISHED: 03-24-2014
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Melatonin has been widely studied for its role in photoperiodism in seasonal breeders; it is also a potent antioxidant. Ubiquitin, a protein also widespread in living cells, contributes to many cellular events, although the most well known is that of tagging proteins for destruction by the proteasome. Herein, we suggest a model in which melatonin interacts with the ubiquitin-proteasome system to regulate a variety of seemingly unrelated processes. Ubiquitin, for example, is a major regulator of central activity of thyroid hormone type 2 deiodinase; the subsequent regulation of T3 may be central to the melatonin-induced changes in seasonal reproduction and seasonal changes in metabolism. Both melatonin and ubiquitin also have important roles in protecting cells from oxidative stress. We discuss the interaction of melatonin and the ubiquitin-proteasome system in oxidative stress through regulation of the ubiquitin-activating enzyme, E1. Previous reports have shown that glutathiolation of this enzyme protects proteins from unnecessary degradation. In addition, evidence is discussed concerning the interaction of ubiquitin and melatonin in activation of the transcription factor NF-?B as well as modulating cellular levels of numerous signal transducing factors including the tumor suppressor, p53. Some of the actions of melatonin on the regulatory particle of the proteasome appear to be related to its inhibition of the calcium-dependent calmodulin kinase II, an enzyme which reportedly copurifies with proteasomes. Many of the actions of melatonin on signal transduction are similar to those of a proteasome inhibitor. While these actions of melatonin could be explained by a direct inhibitory action on the catalytic core particle of the proteasome, this has not been experimentally verified. If our hypothesis of melatonin as a general inhibitor of the ubiquitin-proteasome system is confirmed, it is predicted that more examples of this interaction will be demonstrated in a variety of tissues in which ubiquitin and melatonin co-exist. Furthermore, the hypothesis of melatonin as an inhibitor of the ubiquitin-proteasome system will be a very useful model for clinical testing of melatonin.
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Antitumour activity of melatonin in a mouse model of human prostate cancer: relationship with hypoxia signalling.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 03-20-2014
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Melatonin is known to exert antitumour activity in several types of human cancers, but the underlying mechanisms as well as the efficacy of different doses of melatonin are not well defined. Here, we test the hypothesis whether melatonin in the nanomolar range is effective in exerting antitumour activity in vivo and examine the correlation with the hypoxia signalling mechanism, which may be a major molecular mechanism by which melatonin antagonizes cancer. To test this hypothesis, LNCaP human prostate cancer cells were xenografted into seven-wk-old Foxn1nu/nu male mice that were treated with melatonin (18 i.p. injections of 1 mg/kg in 41 days). Saline-treated mice served as control. We found that the melatonin levels in plasma and xenografted tissue were 4× and 60× higher, respectively, than in control samples. Melatonin tended to restore the redox imbalance by increasing expression of Nrf2. As part of the phenotypic response to these perturbations, xenograft microvessel density was less in melatonin-treated animals, indicative of lower angiogenesis, and the xenograft growth rate was slower (P < 0.0001). These changes were accompanied by a reduced expression of Ki67, elevated expression of HIF-1? and increased phosphorylation of Akt in melatonin than saline-treated mice. We conclude that the beneficial effect of melatonin in reducing cancer growth in vivo was evident at melatonin plasma levels as low as 4 nm and was associated with decreased angiogenesis. Higher HIF-1? expression in xenograft tissue indicates that the antitumour effect cannot be due to a postulated antihypoxic effect, but may stem from lower angiogenesis potential.
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Melatonin and the circadian system: contributions to successful female reproduction.
Fertil. Steril.
PUBLISHED: 03-18-2014
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To summarize the role of melatonin and circadian rhythms in determining optimal female reproductive physiology, especially at the peripheral level.
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Melatonin regulates mesenchymal stem cell differentiation: a review.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 02-25-2014
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Among the numerous functions of melatonin, the control of survival and differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) has been recently proposed. MSCs are a heterogeneous population of multipotent elements resident in tissues such as bone marrow, muscle, and adipose tissue, which are primarily involved in developmental and regeneration processes, gaining thus increasing interest for tissue repair and restoration therapeutic protocols. Receptor-dependent and receptor-independent responses to melatonin are suggested to occur in these cells. These involve antioxidant or redox-dependent functions of this indolamine as well as secondary effects resulting from autocrine and paracrine responses. Inflammatory cytokines and adipokines, proangiogenic/mitogenic stimuli, and other mediators that influence the differentiation processes may affect the survival and functional integrity of these mesenchymal precursor cells. In this scenario, melatonin seems to regulate signaling pathways that drive commitment and differentiation of MSC into osteogenic, chondrogenic, adipogenic, or myogenic lineages. Common pathways suggested to be involved as master regulators of these processes are the Wnt/?-catenin pathway, the MAPKs and the, TGF-? signaling. In this respect melatonin emerges a novel and potential modulator of MSC lineage commitment and adipogenic differentiation. These and other aspects of the physiological and pharmacological effects of melatonin as regulator of MSC are discussed in this review.
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Protective effects of melatonin in reducing oxidative stress and in preserving the fluidity of biological membranes: a review.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 02-19-2014
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Free radicals generated within subcellular compartments damage macromolecules which lead to severe structural changes and functional alterations of cellular organelles. A manifestation of free radical injury to biological membranes is the process of lipid peroxidation, an autooxidative chain reaction in which polyunsaturated fatty acids in the membrane are the substrate. There is considerable evidence that damage to polyunsaturated fatty acids tends to reduce membrane fluidity. However, adequate levels of fluidity are essential for the proper functioning of biological membranes. Thus, there is considerable interest in antioxidant molecules which are able to stabilize membranes because of their protective effects against lipid peroxidation. Melatonin is an indoleamine that modulates a wide variety of endocrine, neural and immune functions. Over the last two decades, intensive research has proven this molecule, as well as its metabolites, to possess substantial antioxidant activity. In addition to their ability to scavenge several reactive oxygen and nitrogen species, melatonin increases the activity of the glutathione redox enzymes, that is, glutathione peroxidase and reductase, as well as other antioxidant enzymes. These beneficial effects of melatonin are more significant because of its small molecular size and its amphipathic behaviour, which facilitates ease of melatonin penetration into every subcellular compartment. In the present work, we review the current information related to the beneficial effects of melatonin in maintaining the fluidity of biological membranes against free radical attack, and further, we discuss its implications for ageing and disease.
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A review of metal-catalyzed molecular damage: protection by melatonin.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 02-17-2014
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Metal exposure is associated with several toxic effects; herein, we review the toxicity mechanisms of cadmium, mercury, arsenic, lead, aluminum, chromium, iron, copper, nickel, cobalt, vanadium, and molybdenum as these processes relate to free radical generation. Free radicals can be generated in cells due to a wide variety of exogenous and endogenous processes, causing modifications in DNA bases, enhancing lipid peroxidation, and altering calcium and sulfhydryl homeostasis. Melatonin, an ubiquitous and pleiotropic molecule, exerts efficient protection against oxidative stress and ameliorates oxidative/nitrosative damage by a variety of mechanisms. Also, melatonin has a chelating property which may contribute in reducing metal-induced toxicity as we postulate here. The aim of this review was to highlight the protective role of melatonin in counteracting metal-induced free radical generation. Understanding the physicochemical insights of melatonin related to the free radical scavenging activity and the stimulation of antioxidative enzymes is of critical importance for the development of novel therapeutic strategies against the toxic action of these metals.
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Melatonin and tadalafil treatment improves erectile dysfunction after spinal cord injury in rats.
Clin. Exp. Pharmacol. Physiol.
PUBLISHED: 02-03-2014
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Oxidative stress plays an important role both in spinal cord injury (SCI) and erectile dysfunction (ED). The present study investigated the effects of melatonin and tadalafil treatment alone or in combination on SCI-induced ED. Male Wistar albino rats (n = 40) were divided into five groups: sham-operated control and SCI-injured rats given either vehicle, melatonin (10 mg/kg, i.p.), tadalafil (10 mg/kg, p.o.) or a combination of melatonin and tadalafil. Spinal cord injury was induced using a standard weight-drop method. On Day 7 after SCI, intracavernosal pressure (ICP) was measured and all rats were decapitated. Cavernosal tissues were obtained to examine caspase 3, nitric oxide synthase (NOS), myeloperoxidase (MPO) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) activities, as well as cGMP, nerve growth factor (NGF), malondialdehyde (MDA) and glutathione (GSH) levels. Spinal cord injury caused oxidative damage, as evidenced by increases in MDA and cGMP levels. In addition, MPO and caspase 3 activites were increased after SCI, whereas GSH and NGF levels and SOD activity were reduced. Melatonin effectively reversed these oxidative changes. Furthermore, in rats treated with both melatonin and tadalafil, the recoveries were more pronounced than in rats given either melatonin or tadalafil alone. The ICP/mean arterial pressure value in vehicle-treated SCI rats was significantly higher than in the control group, whereas in the tadalafil- and tadalafil + melatonin-treated groups have returned this value had returned to control levels. As an individual treatment, and especially when combined with tadalafil, a well-known agent in the treatment of ED, melatonin prevented SCI-induced oxidative damage to cavernosal tissues and restored ED, most likely due to its anti-oxidant effects.
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Melatonin reduces endothelin-1 expression and secretion in colon cancer cells through the inactivation of FoxO-1 and NF-??.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 01-28-2014
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Melatonin is an indoleamine that is synthesised from tryptophan under the control of the enzymes arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase (AA-NAT) and acetylserotonin methyltransferase (ASMT). Melatonin inhibits colon cancer growth in both in vivo and in vitro models; however, a precise mechanism responsible for inhibiting tumour growth has not been clearly described. Endothelin-1 (ET-1) is a peptide that acts as a survival factor in colon cancer, inducing cell proliferation, protecting carcinoma cells from apoptosis and promoting angiogenesis. The data presented show that melatonin inhibits edn-1 mRNA expression (the first step in ET-1 synthesis), ECE-1 protein expression and the release of ET-1 from colorectal cancer cells in vitro. ET-1 levels in cultured media present a similar inhibition pattern to that of edn-1 mRNA expression despite the inhibition of ECE-1 protein after melatonin treatment, which suggests that an endopeptidase other than ECE-1 could be mainly responsible for ET-1 synthesis. The inhibition of edn-1 expression is due to an inactivation of FoxO1 and NF-?? transcription factors. FoxO1 inactivation is associated with an increased Src phosphorylation, due to elevated cAMP content and PKA activity, whereas NF-?? inactivation is associated with the blockade of Akt and ERK phosphorylation due to the inhibition of PKC activity after melatonin treatment. Melatonin also inhibits edn-1 promoter activity regulated by FoxO1 and NF-??. Finally, a significant correlation was observed between AA-NAT and edn-1 expression downregulation in human colorectal cancer tissues. In conclusion, melatonin may be useful in treating colon carcinoma in which the activation of ET-1 plays a role in tumour growth and progression.
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Extrapineal melatonin: sources, regulation, and potential functions.
Cell. Mol. Life Sci.
PUBLISHED: 01-27-2014
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Endogenous melatonin is synthesized from tryptophan via 5-hydroxytryptamine. It is considered an indoleamine from a biochemical point of view because the melatonin molecule contains a substituted indolic ring with an amino group. The circadian production of melatonin by the pineal gland explains its chronobiotic influence on organismal activity, including the endocrine and non-endocrine rhythms. Other functions of melatonin, including its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, its genomic effects, and its capacity to modulate mitochondrial homeostasis, are linked to the redox status of cells and tissues. With the aid of specific melatonin antibodies, the presence of melatonin has been detected in multiple extrapineal tissues including the brain, retina, lens, cochlea, Harderian gland, airway epithelium, skin, gastrointestinal tract, liver, kidney, thyroid, pancreas, thymus, spleen, immune system cells, carotid body, reproductive tract, and endothelial cells. In most of these tissues, the melatonin-synthesizing enzymes have been identified. Melatonin is present in essentially all biological fluids including cerebrospinal fluid, saliva, bile, synovial fluid, amniotic fluid, and breast milk. In several of these fluids, melatonin concentrations exceed those in the blood. The importance of the continual availability of melatonin at the cellular level is important for its physiological regulation of cell homeostasis, and may be relevant to its therapeutic applications. Because of this, it is essential to compile information related to its peripheral production and regulation of this ubiquitously acting indoleamine. Thus, this review emphasizes the presence of melatonin in extrapineal organs, tissues, and fluids of mammals including humans.
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Cardioprotection and pharmacological therapies in acute myocardial infarction: Challenges in the current era.
World J Cardiol
PUBLISHED: 01-17-2014
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In patients with an acute ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction, timely myocardial reperfusion using primary percutaneous coronary intervention is the most effective therapy for limiting myocardial infarct size, preserving left-ventricular systolic function and reducing the onset of heart failure. Within minutes after the restoration of blood flow, however, reperfusion itself results in additional damage, also known as myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury. An improved understanding of the pathophysiological mechanisms underlying reperfusion injury has resulted in the identification of several promising pharmacological (cyclosporin-A, exenatide, glucose-insulin-potassium, atrial natriuretic peptide, adenosine, abciximab, erythropoietin, metoprolol and melatonin) therapeutic strategies for reducing the severity of myocardial reperfusion injury. Many of these agents have shown promise in initial proof-of-principle clinical studies. In this article, we review the pathophysiology underlying myocardial reperfusion injury and highlight the potential pharmacological interventions which could be used in the future to prevent reperfusion injury and improve clinical outcomes in patients with coronary heart disease.
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Role of melatonin on production and preservation of gametes and embryos: a brief review.
Anim. Reprod. Sci.
PUBLISHED: 01-15-2014
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The aim of this brief review is to clarify the role of melatonin in the production and preservation of mammalian gametes and embryos. Melatonin is an indoleamine synthesized from tryptophan in the pineal gland and other organs that operates as a hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis modulator and regulates the waxing and waning of seasonal reproductive competence in photoperiodic mammals. A major function of the melatonin rhythm is to transmit information about the length of the daily photoperiod to the circadian and circannual systems in order to provide time-of-day and time-of-year information, respectively, to the organism. Melatonin is also a powerful antioxidant and anti-apoptotic agent, which is due to its direct scavenging of toxic oxygen derivatives and its ability to reduce the formation of reactive species. Mammalian gametes and embryos are highly vulnerable to oxidative stress due to the presence of high lipid levels; during artificial breeding procedures, these structures are exposed to dramatic changes in the microenvironment, which have a direct bearing on their function and viability. Free radicals influence the balance between oxidation-reduction reactions, disturb the transbilayer-phospholipid asymmetry of the plasma membrane and enhance lipid peroxidation. Melatonin, due to its amphiphilic nature, is undoubtedly useful in tissues by protecting them from free radical-mediated oxidative damage and cellular death. The supplementation of melatonin to semen extender or culture medium significantly improves sperm viability, oocyte competence and blastocyst development in vitro.
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Delivery of pineal melatonin to the brain and SCN: role of canaliculi, cerebrospinal fluid, tanycytes and Virchow-Robin perivascular spaces.
Brain Struct Funct
PUBLISHED: 01-07-2014
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Historically, the direct release of pineal melatonin into the capillary bed within the gland has been accepted as the primary route of secretion. Herein, we propose that the major route of melatonin delivery to the brain is after its direct release into the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of the third ventricle (3V). Melatonin concentrations in the CSF are not only much higher than in the blood, also, there is a rapid nocturnal rise at darkness onset and precipitous decline of melatonin levels at the time of lights on. Because melatonin is a potent free radical scavenger and antioxidant, we surmise that the elevated CSF levels are necessary to combat the massive free radical damage that the brain would normally endure because of its high utilization of oxygen, the parent molecule of many toxic oxygen metabolites, i.e., free radicals. Additionally, the precise rhythm of CSF melatonin provides the master circadian clock, the suprachiasmatic nucleus, with highly accurate chronobiotic information regarding the duration of the dark period. We predict that the discharge of melatonin directly into the 3V is aided by a number of epithalamic structures that have heretofore been overlooked; these include interpinealocyte canaliculi and evaginations of the posterodorsal 3V that directly abut the pineal. Moreover, the presence of tanycytes in the pineal recess and/or a discontinuous ependymal lining in the pineal recess allows melatonin ready access to the CSF. From the ventricles melatonin enters the brain by diffusion and by transport through tanycytes. Melatonin-rich CSF also circulates through the aqueduct and eventually into the subarachnoid space. From the subarachnoid space surrounding the brain, melatonin penetrates into the deepest portions of the neural tissue via the Virchow-Robin perivascular spaces from where it diffuses into the neural parenchyma. Because of the high level of pineal-derived melatonin in the CSF, all portions of the brain are better shielded from oxidative stress resulting from toxic oxygen derivatives.
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Mitochondrial and metabolic dysfunction in renal convoluted tubules of obese mice: protective role of melatonin.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Obesity is a common and complex health problem, which impacts crucial organs; it is also considered an independent risk factor for chronic kidney disease. Few studies have analyzed the consequence of obesity in the renal proximal convoluted tubules, which are the major tubules involved in reabsorptive processes. For optimal performance of the kidney, energy is primarily provided by mitochondria. Melatonin, an indoleamine and antioxidant, has been identified in mitochondria, and there is considerable evidence regarding its essential role in the prevention of oxidative mitochondrial damage. In this study we evaluated the mechanism(s) of mitochondrial alterations in an animal model of obesity (ob/ob mice) and describe the beneficial effects of melatonin treatment on mitochondrial morphology and dynamics as influenced by mitofusin-2 and the intrinsic apoptotic cascade. Melatonin dissolved in 1% ethanol was added to the drinking water from postnatal week 5-13; the calculated dose of melatonin intake was 100 mg/kg body weight/day. Compared to control mice, obesity-related morphological alterations were apparent in the proximal tubules which contained round mitochondria with irregular, short cristae and cells with elevated apoptotic index. Melatonin supplementation in obese mice changed mitochondria shape and cristae organization of proximal tubules, enhanced mitofusin-2 expression, which in turn modulated the progression of the mitochondria-driven intrinsic apoptotic pathway. These changes possibly aid in reducing renal failure. The melatonin-mediated changes indicate its potential protective use against renal morphological damage and dysfunction associated with obesity and metabolic disease.
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Clinical relevance of melatonin in ovarian and placental physiology: a review.
Gynecol. Endocrinol.
PUBLISHED: 12-09-2013
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Abstract Within the last decade, the synthesis of melatonin in and its functions at the level of the peripheral reproductive organs has come into better focus. Melatonin is produced at several reproductive organ sites, e.g., the oocyte, ovarian follicular cells and the placental cytotrophoblasts. Moreover, these cells also contain membrane receptors for this indoleamine. In addition, via the free radical scavenging activity of melatonin and its metabolites, oxidative stress is reduced in all reproductive organ cells ensuring their optimal function. Enhancement of oocyte maturation and preservation of oocyte quality may be major functions of melatonin. Oocyte damage reduces successful fertilization and the development of a healthy fetus. The findings that melatonin protects the oocyte from toxic oxygen species have implications for improving the outcome of in vitro fertilization-embryo transfer procedures, as already shown in two published reports. Some actions of melatonin in the placenta may be context specific. Thus, melatonin is believed to function in the maintenance of optimal placental homeostasis by deferring apoptosis of villous cytotrophoblasts, while protecting syncytiotrophoblasts from oxidative damage. Melatonin reduces oxidative damage in the placenta and may improve hemodynamics and nutrient transfer at the placental-uterine interface. The use of melatonin to treat preeclampsia should also be considered.
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Early assessment of minimal residual disease identifies patients at very high relapse risk in NPM-ALK-positive anaplastic large cell lymphoma.
Blood
PUBLISHED: 12-02-2013
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Detection of minimal disseminated disease (MDD) at diagnosis correlates with relapse risk in children with ALK-positive anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL). We investigated whether minimal residual disease (MRD) positivity by qualitative RT-PCR for NPM-ALK during treatment identifies patients at highest relapse risk. Blood and/or bone marrow of 180 patients with NPM-ALK-positive ALCL treated with BFM-type protocols was screened for NPM-ALK transcripts at diagnosis. 103 were MDD-positive. MRD before therapy course two could be evaluated in 52 MDD-positive patients. MRD-positivity correlated with non-common histology. The cumulative incidence of relapses (CIR) of 26 MDD-positive/MRD-positive patients (81±8%) was significantly higher than CIR of 26 MDD-positive/MRD-negative (31±9%) and 77 MDD-negative patients (15±5%) (p<.001). Five-year survival of MDD-negative and MDD-positive/MRD-negative patients was 91±3% and 92±5%, respectively, compared to 65±9% of MDD-positive/MRD-positive patients (p<.001). Early evaluation of MRD in NPM-ALK positive ALCL identifies patients with a very high relapse risk and inferior survival.
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Pulmonary Function Changes in Rats with Taurocholate-Induced Pancreatitis is Attenuated by Pretreatment with Melatonin.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 10-19-2013
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Melatonin is a free radical scavenger and broad-spectrum antioxidant with immunomodulatory effects. We studied the effects of melatonin on changes in lung function, oxidative/nitrosative stress, and inflammatory cell sequestration in an acute pancreatitis-associated lung inflammation model. Acute pancreatitis was induced by injection of 5% sodium taurocholate into the pancreatic duct of rats. Animals were randomized into control, acute pancreatitis (AP), and a melatonin pretreatment (10 mg/kg)/AP group. Functional residual capacity (FRC), lung compliance (Cchord), expiratory flow rate at 50% (FEF50), airway resistance index (RI), and peak expiratory flow rate (PEF) were evaluated. White blood cell count (WBC) and hydrogen peroxide, lung lavage fluid WBC, methylguanidine, protein, lactic dehydrogenase (LDH), nitric oxide, and leukotriene B4 (LTB4) levels were determined. Lung wet-to-dry weight ratio, peroxynitrite, and inducible nitric oxide synthase (NOS) mRNA and protein were measured. AP induction resulted in reductions in FRC, Cchord, FEF50, and PEF, and increase in RI and lung wet-to-dry weight ratio. Blood and lung lavage fluid WBC, lavage fluid LDH, protein, and blood hydrogen peroxide also increased. Levels of hydroxyl radicals, nitric oxide, and LTB4 in lung lavage fluid, inducible NOS mRNA, protein expression, and peroxynitrite in lung tissue also were significantly elevated. Pre-treatment with melatonin attenuated obstructive and restrictive ventilatory insufficiency induced by AP. Blood and lavage WBC, lavage LDH and protein, lung edema, oxidative/nitrosative stress, and lipoxygenase pathway derivatives were also significantly attenuated by melatonin. We conclude that melatonin decreases AP-induced obstructive and restrictive lung function changes via its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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Melatonin and stable circadian rhythms optimize maternal, placental and fetal physiology.
Hum. Reprod. Update
PUBLISHED: 10-16-2013
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BACKGROUNDResearch within the last decade has shown melatonin to have previously-unsuspected beneficial actions on the peripheral reproductive organs. Likewise, numerous investigations have documented that stable circadian rhythms are also helpful in maintaining reproductive health. The relationship of melatonin and circadian rhythmicity to maternal and fetal health is summarized in this review.METHODSDatabases were searched for the related published English literature up to 15 May 2013. The search terms used in various combinations included melatonin, circadian rhythms, biological clock, suprachiasmatic nucleus, ovary, pregnancy, uterus, placenta, fetus, pre-eclampsia, intrauterine growth restriction, ischemia-reperfusion, chronodisruption, antioxidants, oxidative stress and free radicals. The results of the studies uncovered are summarized herein.RESULTSBoth melatonin and circadian rhythms impact reproduction, especially during pregnancy. Melatonin is a multifaceted molecule with direct free radical scavenging and indirect antioxidant activities. Melatonin is produced in both the ovary and in the placenta where it protects against molecular mutilation and cellular dysfunction arising from oxidative/nitrosative stress. The placenta, in particular, is often a site of excessive free radical generation due to less than optimal adhesion to the uterine wall, which leads to either persistent hypoxia or intermittent hypoxia and reoxygenation, processes that cause massive free radical generation and organ dysfunction. This may contribute to pre-eclampsia and other disorders which often complicate pregnancy. Melatonin has ameliorated free radical damage to the placenta and to the fetus in experiments using non-human mammals. Likewise, the maintenance of a regular maternal light/dark and sleep/wake cycle is important to stabilize circadian rhythms generated by the maternal central circadian pacemaker, the suprachiasmatic nuclei. Optimal circadian rhythmicity in the mother is important since her circadian clock, either directly or indirectly via the melatonin rhythm, programs the developing master oscillator of the fetus. Experimental studies have shown that disturbed maternal circadian rhythms, referred to as chronodisruption, and perturbed melatonin cycles have negative consequences for the maturing fetal oscillators, which may lead to psychological and behavioral problems in the newborn. To optimize regular circadian rhythms and prevent disturbances of the melatonin cycle during pregnancy, shift work and bright light exposure at night should be avoided, especially during the last trimester of pregnancy. Finally, melatonin synergizes with oxytocin to promote delivery of the fetus. Since blood melatonin levels are normally highest during the dark period, the propensity of childbirth to occur at night may relate to the high levels of melatonin at this time which work in concert with oxytocin to enhance the strength of uterine contractions.CONCLUSIONSA number of conclusions naturally evolve from the data summarized in this review: (i) melatonin, of both pineal and placental origin, has essential functions in fetal maturation and placenta/uterine homeostasis; (ii) circadian clock genes, which are components of all cells including those in the peripheral reproductive organs, have important roles in reproductive and organismal (fetal and maternal) physiology; (iii) due to the potent antioxidant actions of melatonin, coupled with its virtual absence of toxicity, this indoleamine may have utility in the treatment of pre-eclampsia, intrauterine growth restriction, placental and fetal ischemia/reperfusion, etc. (iv) the propensity for parturition to occur at night may relate to the synergism between the nocturnal increase in melatonin and oxytocin.
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Protective Role of Melatonin in Neonatal Diseases.
Oxid Med Cell Longev
PUBLISHED: 09-27-2013
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Oxidative stress contributes to the severity of several newborn conditions to the extent that Saugstad coined the phrase "oxygen radical diseases of neonatology." In order to counteract free radicals damage many strategies to augment antioxidant status in ill-term and preterm infants have been proposed and several medications have been experimented with mixed results. Several studies have tested the efficacy of melatonin to counteract oxidative damage in diseases of newborns such as chronic lung disease, perinatal brain injury, necrotizing enterocolitis, and retinopathy of prematurity, giving promising results. The peculiar perinatal susceptibility to oxidative stress indicates that prophylactic use of antioxidants as melatonin could help to prevent or at least reduce oxidative stress related diseases in newborns. However, more studies are needed to confirm these beneficial effects.
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Melatonin and its atheroprotective effects: A review.
Mol. Cell. Endocrinol.
PUBLISHED: 09-26-2013
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Atherosclerosis is a chronic vascular disease in which oxidative stress and inflammation are commonly implicated as major causative factors. Identification of novel strategies that contribute to plaque stabilization or inhibition represents a continuing challenge for the medical community. The evidence from the last decade highlights that melatonin influences the cardiovascular system, but its mechanisms of action have not been definitively clarified. Melatonin has atheroprotective effects by acting on different pathogenic signaling processes; these result from its direct free radical scavenger activity, its indirect antioxidant properties and its anti-inflammatory actions. In this review, we summarize the many pieces of the puzzle which identified molecular targets for prevention and therapy against the atherosclerotic pathogenic processes and we evaluate the data documenting that melatonin treatment has important actions that protect against atherosclerosis and atherosclerosis-related cardiovascular diseases.
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Changes in melatonin levels in transgenic Micro-Tom tomato overexpressing ovine AANAT and ovine HIOMT genes.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 09-17-2013
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In animals, the melatonin biosynthesis pathway has been well defined after the isolation and identification of the four key genes that are involved in the conversion of tryptophan to melatonin. In plants, there are special alternative catalyzing steps, and plant genes share very low homology with the animal genes. It was of interest to examine the phenotype of transgenic Micro-Tom tomato plants overexpressing the homologous sheep oAANAT and oHIOMT genes responsible for the last two steps of melatonin synthesis. The oAANAT transgenic plants have higher melatonin levels and lower indoleacetic acid (IAA) contents than control due to the competition for tryptophan, the same precursor for both melatonin and IAA. Therefore, the oAANAT lines lose the apical dominance inferring that melatonin likely lacks auxin activity. The significantly higher melatonin content in oHIOMT lines than oAANAT lines provides new proof for the important role of ASMT in plant melatonin synthesis. In addition, the enhanced drought tolerance of oHIOMT lines will also be an important contribution for plant engineering.
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Molecular mechanisms of the pro-apoptotic actions of melatonin in cancer: a review.
Expert Opin. Ther. Targets
PUBLISHED: 09-14-2013
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Compelling evidence has highlighted the complex pleiotropic functions elicited by the melatonin in cancer cells. Melatonin behaves as a smart killer, i.e., modulating anti-apoptotic processes in normal cells, and triggering pro-apoptotic signals in cancer cells.
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The RNA-seq approach to discriminate gene expression profiles in response to melatonin on cucumber lateral root formation.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 09-03-2013
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Cucumber is a model cucurbitaceous plant with a known genome sequence which is important for studying molecular mechanisms of root development. In this study, RNA sequencing was employed to explore the mechanism of melatonin-induced lateral root formation in cucumber under salt stress. Three groups of seeds were examined, that is, seeds primed without melatonin (CK), seeds primed in a solution containing 10 or 500 ?mol/L melatonin (M10 and M500, respectively). These seeds were then germinated in NaCl solution. The RNA-seq analysis generated 16,866,670 sequence reads aligned with 17,920 genes, which provided abundant data for the analysis of lateral root formation. A total of 17,552, 17,450, and 17,393 genes were identified from roots of the three treatments (CK, M10 and M500, respectively). The expression of 121 genes was significantly up-regulated, and 196 genes were significantly down-regulated in M500 which showed an obvious increase on the number of lateral roots. These genes were significantly enriched in 57 KEGG pathways and 16 GO terms (M500 versus CK). Based on their expression pattern, peroxidase-related genes were selected as the candidates to be involved in the melatonin response. Several transcription factor families might play important roles in lateral root formation processes. A number of genes related to cell wall formation, carbohydrate metabolic processes, oxidation/reduction processes, and catalytic activity also showed different expression patterns as a result of melatonin treatments. This RNA-sequencing study will enable the scientific community to better define the molecular processes that affect lateral root formation in response to melatonin treatment.
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The universal nature, unequal distribution and antioxidant functions of melatonin and its derivatives.
Mini Rev Med Chem
PUBLISHED: 08-13-2013
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Melatonin is an uncommonly widely distributed molecule. It is found throughout the plant and animal kingdoms, i.e., perhaps in every living organism. Within vertebrate organisms, melatonin also has an extremely wide distribution, seemingly being capable of entering every cell and all subcellular compartments. So-called morphophysiological barriers, e.g., the blood-brain barrier, are no impediment to the passage of melatonin and it has a multitude of confirmed functions. We have hypothesized that melatonin originally evolved as a free radical scavenger and during evolution it acquired other important and essential actions. Due to the multi-faceted actions of melatonin and its metabolites as direct free radical scavengers and indirect antioxidants, these agents have been used to abate oxidative damage in a diverse variety of experimental models where free radical destruction is a component. When compared with classic, better-known antioxidants, melatonin is better in terms of limiting destruction of intracellular macromolecules when the damage is a consequence of excessive oxygen or nitrogen-based toxic reactants. Considering the vast array of experimental data that has accumulated which documents melatonins high efficacy and lack of, or minimal, toxicity over a very wide dose range, it is essential that the usefulness of this agent be more thoroughly tested at the clinical level. The findings from experimental models of numerous diseases overwhelming confirm that this indoleamine would likely have great benefit in aiding humans suffering with conditions that have as their basis tissue and molecular damage resulting from oxygen and nitrogen-based reactants.
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Melatonin induces browning of inguinal white adipose tissue in Zucker diabetic fatty rats.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 08-06-2013
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Melatonin limits obesity in rodents without affecting food intake and activity, suggesting a thermogenic effect. Identification of brown fat (beige/brite) in white adipose tissue (WAT) prompted us to investigate whether melatonin is a brown-fat inducer. We used Zücker diabetic fatty (ZDF) rats, a model of obesity-related type 2 diabetes and a strain in which melatonin reduces obesity and improves their metabolic profiles. At 5 wk of age, ZDF rats and lean littermates (ZL) were subdivided into two groups, each composed of four rats: control and those treated with oral melatonin in the drinking water (10 mg/kg/day) for 6 wk. Melatonin induced browning of inguinal WAT in both ZDF and ZL rats. Hematoxylin-eosin staining showed patches of brown-like adipocytes in inguinal WAT in ZDF rats and also increased the amounts in ZL animals. Inguinal skin temperature was similar in untreated lean and obese rats. Melatonin increased inguinal temperature by 1.36 ± 0.02°C in ZL and by 0.55 ± 0.04°C in ZDF rats and sensitized the thermogenic effect of acute cold exposure in both groups. Melatonin increased the amounts of thermogenic proteins, uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) (by ~2-fold, P < 0.01) and PGC-1? (by 25%, P < 0.05) in extracts from beige inguinal areas in ZL rats. Melatonin also induced measurable amounts of UCP1 and stimulated by ~2-fold the levels of PGC-1? in ZDF animals. Locomotor activity and circulating irisin levels were not affected by melatonin. These results demonstrate that chronic oral melatonin drives WAT into a brown-fat-like function in ZDF rats. This may contribute to melatonins control of body weight and its metabolic benefits.
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Melatonin secretion and metabolism in patients with hepatic encephalopathy.
J. Gastroenterol. Hepatol.
PUBLISHED: 07-28-2013
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The rhythm of melatonin secretion and its blood level changes in cirrhotic patients, but the causes of these alterations have not been sufficiently appreciated. The aim of study was to estimate the dependence between melatonin secretion and metabolism and the severity of hepatic encephalopathy.
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A walnut-enriched diet reduces the growth of LNCaP human prostate cancer xenografts in nude mice.
Cancer Invest.
PUBLISHED: 06-11-2013
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It was investigated whether a standard mouse diet (AIN-76A) supplemented with walnuts reduced the establishment and growth of LNCaP human prostate cancer cells in nude (nu/nu) mice. The walnut-enriched diet reduced the number of tumors and the growth of the LNCaP xenografts; 3 of 16 (18.7%) of the walnut-fed mice developed tumors; conversely, 14 of 32 mice (44.0%) of the control diet-fed animals developed tumors. Similarly, the xenografts in the walnut-fed animals grew more slowly than those in the control diet mice. The final average tumor size in the walnut-diet animals was roughly one-fourth the average size of the prostate tumors in the mice that ate the control diet.
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Melatonin: the watchdog of villous trophoblast homeostasis against hypoxia/reoxygenation-induced oxidative stress and apoptosis.
Mol. Cell. Endocrinol.
PUBLISHED: 06-10-2013
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Human placenta produces melatonin and expresses its receptors. We propose that melatonin, an antioxidant, protects the human placenta against hypoxia/reoxygenation (H/R)-induced damage. Primary term villous cytotrophoblasts were cultured under normoxia (8% O2) with or without 1mM melatonin for 72h to induce differentiation into the syncytiotrophoblast. The cells were then cultured for an additional 22h under normoxia or subjected to hypoxia (0.5% O2) for 4h followed by 18h reoxygenation (8% O2) with or without melatonin. H/R induced oxidative stress, which activated the Bax/Bcl-2 mitochondrial apoptosis pathway and the downstream fragmentation of DNA. Villous trophoblast treatment with melatonin reversed all the negative effects induced by H/R to normoxic levels. This study shows that melatonin protects the villous trophoblast against H/R-induced oxidative stress and apoptosis and suggests a potential preventive and therapeutic use of this indolamine in pregnancy complications characterized by syncytiotrophoblast survival alteration.
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Luminal melatonin stimulates pancreatic enzyme secretion via activation of serotonin-dependent nerves.
Pharmacol Rep
PUBLISHED: 06-08-2013
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Serotonin (5-HT) is released from enterochromaffin cells in the gastrointestinal tract. 5-HT, via the activation of 5-HT2 and 5-HT3 receptors on vagal fibers, mediates pancreatic secretion through the mechanism independent from cholecystokinin. Melatonin (5-HT derivative) or L-tryptophan (melatonin or 5-HT precursor) given systemically or intraduodenally to the rats stimulate amylase secretion, but the mechanism is not clear. The aim of this study was to investigate the involvement of 5-HT in the pancreatostimulatory effect of melatonin or L-tryptophan, administered intraduodenally.
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Melatonin promotes the in vitro development of pronuclear embryos and increases the efficiency of blastocyst implantation in murine.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 05-17-2013
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When a defect occurs in the in vitro development of a pronuclear embryo, the interruption of the subsequent implantation limits the success of assisted conception. This common problem remains to be solved. In this study, we observed that melatonin at its physiological concentration (10(-7)  m) significantly promoted the in vitro development of murine pronuclear embryos. This was indicated by the increased blastocyst rate, hatching blastocyst rate, and blastocyst cell number with melatonin treatment. In addition, when these blastocysts were implanted into female recipient mice, the pregnancy rates (95.0% versus control 67.8%), litter sizes (4.1 pups/litter versus control 2.7 pups/litter), and postnatal survival rates of offspring (96.84% versus control 81.24%) were significantly improved compared with their non-melatonin-treated counterparts. Mechanistic studies revealed that melatonin treatment upregulates gene expression of the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase (SOD), and the anti-apoptotic factor bcl-2 while downregulating the expression of pro-apoptotic genes p53 and caspase-3. Due to these changes, melatonin treatment reduces ROS production and cellular apoptosis during in vitro embryo development and improves the quality of blastocysts. The implantation of blastocysts with higher quality leads to more healthy offspring and increased pup survival.
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Metabolism of melatonin and biological activity of intermediates of melatoninergic pathway in human skin cells.
FASEB J.
PUBLISHED: 04-25-2013
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Indolic and kynuric pathways of skin melatonin metabolism were monitored by liquid chromatography mass spectrometry in human keratinocytes, melanocytes, dermal fibroblasts, and melanoma cells. Production of 6-hydroxymelatonin [6(OH)M], N(1)-acetyl-N(2)-formyl-5-methoxykynuramine (AFMK) and 5-methoxytryptamine (5-MT) was detected in a cell type-dependent fashion. The major metabolites, 6(OH)M and AFMK, were produced in all cells. Thus, in immortalized epidermal (HaCaT) keratinocytes, 6(OH)M was the major product with Vmax = 63.7 ng/10(6) cells and Km = 10.2 ?M, with lower production of AFMK and 5-MT. Melanocytes, keratinocytes, and fibroblasts transformed melatonin primarily into 6(OH)M and AFMK. In melanoma cells, 6(OH)M and AFMK were produced endogenously, a process accelerated by exogenous melatonin in the case of AFMK. In addition, N-acetylserotonin was endogenously produced by normal and malignant melanocytes. Metabolites showed selective antiproliferative effects on human primary epidermal keratinocytes in vitro. In ex vivo human skin, both melatonin and AFMK-stimulated expression of involucrin and keratins-10 and keratins-14 in the epidermis, indicating their stimulatory role in building and maintaining the epidermal barrier. In summary, the metabolism of melatonin and its endogenous production is cell type-dependent and expressed in all three main cell populations of human skin. Furthermore, melatonin and its metabolite AFMK stimulate differentiation in human epidermis, indicating their key role in building the skin barrier.
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Expression of melatonin synthesizing enzymes in Helicobacter pylori infected gastric mucosa.
Biomed Res Int
PUBLISHED: 04-15-2013
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Helicobacter pylori colonization of gastric mucosa causes pain of unknown etiology in about 15-20% of infected subjects. The aim of the present work was to determine the level of expression of enzymes involved in the synthesis of melatonin in gastric mucosa of asymptomatic and symptomatic H. pylori infected patients. To diagnose H. pylori infection, histological analysis and the urea breath test (UBT C13) were performed. The levels of mRNA expression of arylalkylamine-N-acetyltransferase (AA-NAT) and acetylserotonin methyltransferase (ASMT) were estimated in gastric mucosa with RT-PCR. The level of AA-NAT expression and AMST was decreased in H. pylori infected patients and was increased after H. pylori eradication. We conclude that decreased expression of melatonin synthesizing enzymes, AA-NAT and ASMT, in patients with symptomatic H. pylori infection returns to normal level after H. pylori eradication.
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Global left ventricular longitudinal strain is associated with decreased melatonin levels in patients with acute myocardial infarction: a two-dimensional speckle tracking study.
Biomarkers
PUBLISHED: 04-08-2013
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Low circulating melatonin levels predict poor outcome in patients with ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI). In the present study, we investigated whether a relationship between myocardial deformation in parameters measured by echocardiography and circulating melatonin level exists. We prospectively included 112 patients with STEMI who performed echocardiography and simultaneous measurement of serum melatonin, during the light period within 72?h of admission. We found a negative correlation between circulating melatonin levels and global longitudinal strain (p?=?0.006, r?=?-0.33). In conclusion, melatonin levels have a correlation with two-dimensional speckle tracking in patients with STEMI.
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Evaluation of enterochromaffin cells and melatonin secretion exponents in ulcerative colitis.
World J. Gastroenterol.
PUBLISHED: 04-01-2013
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To study an assessment of the number of enterochromaffin cells and expression of hydroxyindole-O-methyltransferase in colonic mucosa and urine excretion of 6-sulfatoxymelatonin in patients with ulcerative colitis.
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Melatonin induces apoptosis through a caspase-dependent but reactive oxygen species-independent mechanism in human leukemia Molt-3 cells.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 04-01-2013
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Melatonin is a naturally occurring indoleamine synthesized in the pineal gland that exhibits an extensive repertoire of biological activities. An increasing number of studies indicate that melatonin protects normal cells, while it reducing cancer cell proliferation. In this study, we investigated the effect of melatonin on the growth of the human leukemia cells and found that it efficiently reduced the number of cells in a concentration- and time-dependent manner. Thus, incubation with the indoleamine increased the percentage of cells with a hypodiploid DNA content, augmented the number of annexin V-positive cells, and also provoked ultrastructural changes that are features of apoptotic cell death. Evaluation of caspases revealed that caspase-3, caspase-6, caspase-7, and caspase-9, but not caspase-8 and caspase-2, were quickly activated (3-6 hr). The increase in the activity of these proteases was associated with up-regulation of the pro-apoptotic factor Bax and also with the release of cytochrome c from mitochondria. Pretreatment of the cells with the general caspase inhibitor z-VAD-fmk, reduced melatonin-induced apoptosis, but it did not block cell death suggesting that melatonin activates an alternative cell death modality in the absence of caspase activity. Thus, the activation of caspases was preceded by a fast (<30 min) increase in reactive oxygen species (ROS). Rotenone and antimycin A reduced the levels of ROS stimulated by melatonin, indicating that the complex I and the complex III of the mitochondrial electron transport chain are important sources of these chemical species. However, the role of ROS in melatonin-induced cell death remains elusive because anti-oxidants that were shown to decrease ROS levels (glutathione, N-acetyl-l-cysteine and Trolox) were unable to abrogate melatonin-induced cell death.
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Peripheral reproductive organ health and melatonin: ready for prime time.
Int J Mol Sci
PUBLISHED: 02-25-2013
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Melatonin has a wide variety of beneficial actions at the level of the gonads and their adnexa. Some actions are mediated via its classic membrane melatonin receptors while others seem to be receptor-independent. This review summarizes many of the published reports which confirm that melatonin, which is produced in the ovary, aids in advancing follicular maturation and preserving the integrity of the ovum prior to and at the time of ovulation. Likewise, when ova are collected for in vitro fertilization-embryo transfer, treating them with melatonin improves implantation and pregnancy rates. Melatonin synthesis as well as its receptors have also been identified in the placenta. In this organ, melatonin seems to be of particular importance for the maintenance of the optimal turnover of cells in the villous trophoblast via its ability to regulate apoptosis. For male gametes, melatonin has also proven useful in protecting them from oxidative damage and preserving their viability. Incubation of ejaculated animal sperm improves their motility and prolongs their viability. For human sperm as well, melatonin is also a valuable agent for protecting them from free radical damage. In general, the direct actions of melatonin on the gonads and adnexa of mammals indicate it is an important agent for maintaining optimal reproductive physiology.
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Analysis of constant tissue remodeling in Syrian hamster Harderian gland: intra-tubular and inter-tubular syncytial masses.
J. Anat.
PUBLISHED: 02-25-2013
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The Syrian hamster Harderian gland (HG) has a marked sexual dimorphism and exhibits an extraordinary rate of porphyrinogenesis. The physiological oxidative stress, derived from constant porphyrin production, is so high that the HG needs additional survival autophagic mechanisms to fight against this chronic exposure, provoking the triggering of a holocrine secretion in female glands that forms two types of secretory masses: intra-tubular-syncytial and inter-tubular-syncytial masses. The aim of this work was to study the development of this inter-tubular holocrine secretion. To approach this task, we have considered that the steps developed during the formation of the so-called invasive masses consist of the growth of epithelial cells, cell detachment from the basal lamina and invasion of surrounding tissues. The presence of these masses, particularly in the female HG, are closely linked to sexual dimorphism in redox balance and to alterations in the expression of certain factors such as cytokeratins, P-cadherin, matrix metalloproteinases, cathepsin H, proliferating cell nuclear antigen, p53, CD-31 and vascular endothelial growth factor, which seem to be involved in tissue remodeling. The results document unusual mechanisms of secretion in Syrian hamster HG: an extraordinary system of massive secretion through the conjunctive tissue, disrupting the branched structure of the gland.
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AMPK involvement in endoplasmic reticulum stress and autophagy modulation after fatty liver graft preservation: a role for melatonin and trimetazidine cocktail.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 02-22-2013
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Ischemia/reperfusion injury (IRI) associated with liver transplantation plays an important role in the induction of graft injury. Prolonged cold storage remains a risk factor for liver graft outcome, especially when steatosis is present. Steatotic livers exhibit exacerbated endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress that occurs in response to cold IRI. In addition, a defective liver autophagy correlates well with liver damage. Here, we evaluated the combined effect of melatonin and trimetazidine as additives to IGL-1 solution in the modulation of ER stress and autophagy in steatotic liver grafts through activation of AMPK. Steatotic livers were preserved for 24 hr (4°C) in UW or IGL-1 solutions with or without MEL + TMZ and subjected to 2-hr reperfusion (37°C). We assessed hepatic injury (ALT and AST) and function (bile production). We evaluated ER stress (GRP78, PERK, and CHOP) and autophagy (beclin-1, ATG7, LC3B, and P62). Steatotic livers preserved in IGL-1 + MEL + TMZ showed lower injury and better function as compared to those preserved in IGL-1 alone. IGL-1 + MEL + TMZ induced a significant decrease in GRP78, pPERK, and CHOP activation after reperfusion. This was consistent with a major activation of autophagic parameters (beclin-1, ATG7, and LC3B) and AMPK phosphorylation. The inhibition of AMPK induced an increase in ER stress and a significant reduction in autophagy. These data confirm the close relationship between AMPK activation and ER stress and autophagy after cold IRI. The addition of melatonin and TMZ to IGL-1 solution improved steatotic liver graft preservation through AMPK activation, which reduces ER stress and increases autophagy.
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Revisiting chronodisruption: when the physiological nexus between internal and external times splits in humans.
Naturwissenschaften
PUBLISHED: 02-20-2013
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In this Concepts & Synthesis paper, we expand the definition of chronodisruption in humans by proposing that it can be operationalized as the split nexus of internal and external times. With this premise, we suggest how chronotype may be used as a temporal marker (chronomarker) of exposure to chronodisruption in studies of cancer, and beyond, offer cancer risk predictions for observational research on the basis of a chronotype-related hypothesis and corollary, and point to first empirical data in humans. In an a priori way, we examine possible outcomes and perspectives for preventive measures following from our rationale and the suggested chronobiology-driven studies and close with overall advances of chronodisruption research.
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Esophagoprotection mediated by exogenous and endogenous melatonin in an experimental model of reflux esophagitis.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 02-08-2013
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Reflux esophagitis is a common clinical entity in western countries with approximately 30% of the population experiencing the symptoms at least once every month. The imbalance between the protective and aggressive factors leads to inflammation and damage of the esophageal mucosa. We compared the effect of exogenous melatonin and melatonin derived endogenously from L-tryptophan with that of pantoprazole or ranitidine in acid reflux esophagitis due to ligation of the rat pylorus and the limiting ridge between the forestomach and the corpus. Four hours after the induction of gastric reflux, an increase in mucosal lesions associated with edema of the submucosa and with the infiltration of numerous neutrophils and the fall in esophageal blood flow (EBF) were observed. Both melatonin and L-tryptophan or pantoprazole significantly reduced the lesion index (LI) and raised the EBF. Pinealectomy that significantly decreased plasma melatonin levels aggravated LI and these effects were reduced by melatonin and L-tryptophan. Luzindole, the MT2 receptor antagonist, abolished the melatonin-induced reduction in LI and the rise in EBF. L-NNA and capsaicin that augmented LI and decreased EBF, also significantly reduced melatonin-induced protection and hyperemia; both were restored with L-arginine and calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) added to melatonin. Upregulation of IL-1? and TNF-? mRNAs and plasma IL-1? and TNF-? levels were significantly attenuated by melatonin and L-tryptophan. We conclude that melatonin protects against acid reflux-induced damage via activation of MT2 receptors mediated by NO and CGRP released from sensory nerves and the suppression of expression and release of TNF-? and IL-1?.
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Melatonin inhibits matrix metalloproteinase-9 activity by binding to its active site.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 01-17-2013
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The zinc-dependent matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are key enzymes associated with extracellular matrix (ECM) remodeling; they play critical roles under both physiological and pathological conditions. MMP-9 activity is linked to many pathological processes, including rheumatoid arthritis, atherosclerosis, gastric ulcer, tumor growth, and cancer metastasis. Specific inhibition of MMP-9 activity may be a promising target for therapy for diseases characterized by dysregulated ECM turnover. Potent MMP-9 inhibitors including an indole scaffold were recently reported in an X-ray crystallographic study. Herein, we addressed whether melatonin, a secretory product of pineal gland, has an inhibitory effect on MMP-9 function. Gelatin zymographic analysis showed a significant reduction in pro- and active MMP-9 activity in vitro in a dose- and time-dependent manner. In addition, a human gastric adenocarcinoma cell line (AGS) exhibited a reduced (~50%) MMP-9 expression when incubated with melatonin, supporting an inhibitory effect of melatonin on MMP-9. Atomic-level interaction between melatonin and MMP-9 was probed with computational chemistry tools. Melatonin docked into the active site cleft of MMP-9 and interacted with key catalytic site residues including the three histidines that form the coordination complex with the catalytic zinc as well as proline 421 and alanine 191. We hypothesize that under physiological conditions, tight binding of melatonin in the active site might be involved in reducing the catalytic activity of MMP-9. This finding could provide a novel approach to physical docking of biomolecules to the catalytic site of MMPs, which inhibits this protease, to arrest MMP-9-mediated inflammatory signals.
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Melatonin inhibits the proliferation of human osteosarcoma cell line MG-63.
Bone
PUBLISHED: 01-03-2013
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It seems established that the onset of osteosarcoma and the reduction in melatonin production run in parallel; this suggests that the decline in the cancer-inhibiting agent, melatonin, may contribute to the occurrence of osteosarcoma and that melatonin supplementation may have promise for preventing the development and progression of this condition. There is, however, no direct evidence regarding an antiproliferative effect of melatonin in osteosarcoma cells. In the current study, we examined whether melatonin inhibits the proliferation of human osteosarcoma cell line MG-63. MTT staining showed that at 4 mM-10 mM concentrations, melatonin significantly reduced the MG-63 cell proliferation in a dose-dependent and time-dependent manner. Flow cytometry documented that 4 mM melatonin significantly increased the fraction of cells in the G(0)/G(1) phase of the cell cycle, while simultaneously reducing the proportion in the S and G(2)/M phases. Western blot and real-time PCR analyses further confirmed that melatonins inhibitory effect was possibly because of downregulation of cyclin D1 and CDK4, related to the G(1) phase, and of cyclin B1 and CDK1, related to the G(2)/M phase. There was no downregulation of cyclin E, CDK2, and cyclin A, which are related to G(1)/S transition and S phase. These findings provide evidence that melatonin may significantly inhibit human osteosarcoma cell proliferation in a dose-dependent and time-dependent manner and this inhibition involves the downregulation of cyclin D1, CDK4, cyclin B1 and CDK1.
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Experimental models of melatonin-deficient hypertension.
Front Biosci (Landmark Ed)
PUBLISHED: 01-02-2013
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Melatonin secreted by the pineal gland plays an important role in the regulation of blood pressure (BP) and its administration reduces hypertension both in animals and humans. There are two experimental models of melatonin-deficient hypertension: one induced by pinealectomy and another by continuous 24 hour exposure to light. Both models cause melatonin deficiency and prevent darkness-mediated nocturnal melatonin secretion and are associated with increased BP and myocardial, vascular and renal dysfunction. These models also lead to neurohumoral activation of the renin-angiotensin system, sympathetic nervous system, adrenocorticotrophin-glucocorticoid axis and cause insulin resistance. Together, these alterations contribute to rise in blood pressure by vasoconstrictive or circulatory fluid volume overload. The light induced hypertension model mimics the melatonin deficiency in patients with insufficient nocturnal BP decline, in those who have night shift or who are exposed to environmental light pollution. For this reason, this model is useful in development of anti-hypertensive drugs.
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Pain in neonatal intensive care: role of melatonin as an analgesic antioxidant.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 12-05-2011
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Endotracheal intubation is a common painful procedure in newborn care. Neonates are more sensitive to pain than older infants, children, and adults, and this hypersensitivity is further exacerbated in preterm neonates. The aim of this study was to evaluate the analgesic activity of melatonin during endotracheal intubation of the newborn by using the Neonatal Infant Pain Scale (NIPS) and Premature Infant Pain Profile (PIPP) score. Secondary outcome was an evaluation of melatonin as inflammatory responses. This was performed by measuring the levels of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines implicated in the pain. Sixty preterm infants were enrolled in the study and were randomly divided into two groups: 30 infants treated with melatonin plus common sedation and analgesia recommended by Italian Society of Neonatology (group 1) and 30 infants treated with only common sedation and analgesia. The sedative and analgesic drugs included atropine, fentanyl, and vecuronium. The reduction in pain score (NIPS) was similar in both groups at an early phase, while it (PIPP score) was lower in melatonin-treated group infants than the other newborns at a late phase, during intubation and mechanical ventilation. The differences were statistically significant at 12, 24, 48, and 72 hr (P < 0.001). Pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines (IL-6, IL-8, IL-10 and IL-12) were higher in the common sedation and analgesia group than in melatonin-treated infants at 24, 48, 72 hr and 7 days (P < 0.001). This study suggests the use of melatonin as an adjunct analgesic therapy during procedural pain, especially when an inflammatory component is involved.
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Alzheimers disease: pathological mechanisms and the beneficial role of melatonin.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 11-23-2011
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Alzheimers disease (AD) is a highly complex neurodegenerative disorder of the aged that has multiple factors which contribute to its etiology in terms of initiation and progression. This review summarizes these diverse aspects of this form of dementia. Several hypotheses, often with overlapping features, have been formulated to explain this debilitating condition. Perhaps the best-known hypothesis to explain AD is that which involves the role of the accumulation of amyloid-? peptide in the brain. Other theories that have been invoked to explain AD and summarized in this review include the cholinergic hypothesis, the role of neuroinflammation, the calcium hypothesis, the insulin resistance hypothesis, and the association of AD with peroxidation of brain lipids. In addition to summarizing each of the theories that have been used to explain the structural neural changes and the pathophysiology of AD, the potential role of melatonin in influencing each of the theoretical processes involved is discussed. Melatonin is an endogenously produced and multifunctioning molecule that could theoretically intervene at any of a number of sites to abate the changes associated with the development of AD. Production of this indoleamine diminishes with increasing age, coincident with the onset of AD. In addition to its potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities, melatonin has a multitude of other functions that could assist in explaining each of the hypotheses summarized above. The intent of this review is to stimulate interest in melatonin as a potentially useful agent in attenuating and/or delaying AD.
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Melatonin, the circadian multioscillator system and health: the need for detailed analyses of peripheral melatonin signaling.
J. Pineal Res.
PUBLISHED: 10-28-2011
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Evidence is accumulating regarding the importance of circadian core oscillators, several associated factors, and melatonin signaling in the maintenance of health. Dysfunction of endogenous clocks, melatonin receptor polymorphisms, age- and disease-associated declines of melatonin likely contribute to numerous diseases including cancer, metabolic syndrome, diabetes type 2, hypertension, and several mood and cognitive disorders. Consequences of gene silencing, overexpression, gene polymorphisms, and deviant expression levels in diseases are summarized. The circadian system is a complex network of central and peripheral oscillators, some of them being relatively independent of the pacemaker, the suprachiasmatic nucleus. Actions of melatonin on peripheral oscillators are poorly understood. Various lines of evidence indicate that these clocks are also influenced or phase-reset by melatonin. This includes phase differences of core oscillator gene expression under impaired melatonin signaling, effects of melatonin and melatonin receptor knockouts on oscillator mRNAs or proteins. Cross-connections between melatonin signaling pathways and oscillator proteins, including associated factors, are discussed in this review. The high complexity of the multioscillator system comprises alternate or parallel oscillators based on orthologs and paralogs of the core components and a high number of associated factors with varying tissue-specific importance, which offers numerous possibilities for interactions with melatonin. It is an aim of this review to stimulate research on melatonin signaling in peripheral tissues. This should not be restricted to primary signal molecules but rather include various secondarily connected pathways and discriminate between direct effects of the pineal indoleamine at the target organ and others mediated by modulation of oscillators.
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Functional roles of melatonin in plants, and perspectives in nutritional and agricultural science.
J. Exp. Bot.
PUBLISHED: 10-20-2011
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The presence of melatonin in plants is universal. Evidence has confirmed that a major portion of the melatonin is synthesized by plants themselves even though a homologue of the classic arylalkylamine N-acetyltransferase (AANAT) has not been identified as yet in plants. Thus, the serotonin N-acetylating enzyme in plants may differ greatly from the animal AANAT with regard to sequence and structure. This would imply multiple evolutionary origins of enzymes with these catalytic properties. A primary function of melatonin in plants is to serve as the first line of defence against internal and environmental oxidative stressors. The much higher melatonin levels in plants compared with those found in animals are thought to be a compensatory response by plants which lack means of mobility, unlike animals, as a means of coping with harsh environments. Importantly, remarkably high melatonin concentrations have been measured in popular beverages (coffee, tea, wine, and beer) and crops (corn, rice, wheat, barley, and oats). Billions of people worldwide consume these products daily. The beneficial effects of melatonin on human health derived from the consumption of these products must be considered. Evidence also indicates that melatonin has an ability to increase the production of crops. The mechanisms may involve the roles of melatonin in preservation of chlorophyll, promotion of photosynthesis, and stimulation of root development. Transgenic plants with enhanced melatonin content could probably lead to breakthroughs to increase crop production in agriculture and to improve the general health of humans.
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