Biomol Ther.  2015 May;23(3):261-267. 10.4062/biomolther.2014.146.

Effect of Pioglitazone on Excitotoxic Neuronal Damage in the Mouse Hippocampus

  • 1Department of Pharmacy, College of Pharmacy, Dankook University, Cheonan 330-714, Republic of Korea.
  • 2Department of Anatomy, Brain Research Institute, Chungnam National University School of Medicine, Daejeon 301-747, Republic of Korea.
  • 3Department of Plastic Surgery, Chungnam National University Hospital, Daejeon 301-721, Republic of Korea.


Pioglitazone (PGZ), a synthetic peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma agonist, is known to regulate inflammatory process and to have neuroprotective effects against neurological disorders. In the present study, we examined the effects of 30 mg/kg PGZ on excitotoxic neuronal damage and glial activation in the mouse hippocampus following intracerebroventricular injection of kainic acid (KA). PGZ treatment significantly reduced seizure-like behavior. PGZ had the neuroprotective effect against KA-induced neuronal damage and attenuated the activations of astrocytes and microglia in the hippocampal CA3 region. In addition, MPO and NFkappaB immunoreactivities in the glial cells were also decreased in the PGZ-treated group. These results indicate that PGZ had anticonvulsant and neuroprotective effects against KA-induced excitotocix injury, and that neuroprotective effect of PGZ might be due to the attenuation of KA-induced activation in astrocytes and microglia as well as KA-induced increases in MPO and NFkappaB.


Pioglitazone; Kainic acid; Neuroprotection; Hippocampus; Astrocyte; Microglia
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