Effect of galantamine on adjuvant-induced arthritis in rats.

Gowayed, M. A., R. Refaat, W. M. Ahmed, and H. S. El-Abhar, "Effect of galantamine on adjuvant-induced arthritis in rats.", European journal of pharmacology, vol. 764, pp. 547-53, 2015 Oct 5.


Stimulation of the vagus nerve suppresses cytokine production and macrophage activation, via the interaction of its neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh) with the α7 subunit of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR), present on neurons and inflammatory cells. The present study aimed to verify the potential anti-inflammatory effect of galantamine against experimental arthritis induced in rats. Fourteen days post adjuvant injection, Sprague-Dawley rats were treated orally with three doses of galantamine (1.25, 2.5 and 5 mg/kg) or leflunomide (10 mg/kg) for 2 weeks and arthritis progression was assessed by hind paw swelling. Additionally, serum biomarkers, viz., anti-cyclic citrullinated peptide antibodies (Anti-CCP), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-10 (IL-10) and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) were measured. Radiological examination of the hind paws was also carried out to evaluate the degree of joint damage. Adjuvant arthritis led to a significant weight loss, marked swelling of the hind paw and alteration in the serum levels of anti-CCP, TNF-α, IL-10 and MCP-1. These alterations were associated with significant radiological changes of the joints. Galantamine, in a dose-dependent manner, reduced significantly all biomarkers of inflammation, with the highest dose showing the best beneficial anti-inflammatory effect that was superior in magnitude to the reference drug leflunomide in most of the studied parameters. In conclusion, these results suggest that galantamine may represent a novel, inexpensive and effective therapeutic strategy in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis.