Publications by authors named "Mingqian Yu"

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DFO treatment protects against depression-like behaviors and cognitive impairment in CUMS mice.

Brain Res Bull 2022 Sep 30;187:75-84. Epub 2022 Jun 30.

College of Life Sciences and Key Laboratory of Bioactive Materials Ministry of Education, Nankai University, 300071 Tianjin, PR China. Electronic address:

Depression has several negative effects on emotion as well as learning and memory abilities. Previous studies showed that depression could exacerbate inflammation, which in turn further aggravated depression. Deferoxamine (DFO) is a chelating agent binding iron and aluminium, and is clinically applied to treat acute ion poisoning and hemochromatosis. Researches showed that it could reduce inflammation via increasing the expression of hypoxia-inducible factor-1alpha (HIF-1α). Here, we established a chronic unpredictable mild stress (CUMS) model to investigate whether DFO exerted a neuroprotective function in depression. The results demonstrated that CUMS (4 weeks) effectively induced depression-like behaviors in mice based on sucrose preference test (SPT), forced swim test (FST), tail suspension test (TST), open field test (OFT), and elevated plus-maze test (EPT). It also brought cognitive deficits based on Morris water maze (MWM) test and the impairment of synaptic plasticity based on in vivo electrophysiological recordings. Additionally, CUMS exposure significantly decreased the expression of hippocampal synapse related proteins and the spine density of neurons in the DG region, accompanied by increasing the expression of hippocampal inflammatory cytokines, and promoted the activation of microglia in the hippocampus. The expression of HIF-1α was down-regulated as expected. However, DFO distinctly reversed the CUMS-induced impairments. The mechanism is associated with the DFO inhibition of inflammation by upregulating HIF-1 expression, thereby alleviating a series of pathology changes. Together, these findings suggest that DFO likely plays a protective role in cognitive impairments and synaptic plasticity deficits resulting from depression.
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September 2022