Human chorionic gonadotropin attenuates amyloid-β plaques induced by streptozotocin in the rat brain by affecting cytochrome c-ir neuron density

Document Type : Original Article


1 Neuroscience Research Center, Golestan University of Medical Sciences, Gorgan, Iran

2 Neuroscience Research Center, Department of Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine, Golestan University of Medical Sciences, Gorgan, Iran

3 Stem Cell Research Center, Department of Immunology, Faculty of Medicine, Golestan University of Medical Sciences, Gorgan, Iran


Objective(s): Amyloid β plaques, in Alzheimer’s disease, are deposits in different areas of the brain such as prefrontal cortex, molecular layer of the cerebellum, and the hippocampal formation. Amyloid β aggregates lead to the release of cytochrome c and finally neuronal cell death in brain tissue. hCG has critical roles in brain development, neuron differentiation, and function. Therefore, we investigated the effect of hCG on the density of the congophilic Aβ plaque and cytochrome c-ir neurons in the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, and cerebellum of Streptozotocin (STZ)-treated rats.
Materials and Methods: Alzheimer model in rats (except the control group) was induced by streptozotocin (3 mg/kg, Intracerebroventricularly (ICV)). Experimental group rats received streptozotocin and then different doses of hCG (50, 100, and 200 IU, intraperitoneally) for 3 days. 48 hr after last drug injection and after histological processing, the brain sections were stained by congo red for congophilic amyloid β plaques and cytochrome c in the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, and cerebellum were immunohistochemically stained.
Results: Density of congophilic Aβ plaques and cytochrome c-immunoreactive neurons was significantly higher in ICV STZ treated rats than controls. Treatment with three doses of hCG significantly decreased the density of congophilic Aβ plaques and cytochrome c-immunoreactive neurons in the rat hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, and cerebellum in ICV STZ-treated rats (P<0.05).
Conclusion: hCG can be useful in AD patients to prevent the congophilic Aβ plaque formation and decrease cytochrome c-immunoreactive neuron density in the brain.


Main Subjects

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