Ezzat, M. I., M. Y. Issa, I. E. Sallam, D. Zaafar, H. M. A. Khalil, M. R. Mousa, D. Sabry, A. Y. Gawish, A. H. Elghandour, and E. Mohsen, "Impact of different processing methods on the phenolics and neuroprotective activity of Duch. extracts in a D-galactose and aluminum chloride-induced rat model of aging.", Food & function, vol. 13, issue 14, pp. 7794-7812, 2022. Abstract

Age-related diseases, including dementia, are a major health concern affecting daily human life. Strawberry ( Duch.) is the most eaten fruit worldwide due to its exceptional aroma and flavor. However, it's rapid softening and decay limit its shelf-life. Freezing and boiling represent the well-known conservation methods to extend its shelf-life. Therefore, we aimed to discover the phytochemical content differences of fresh and processed strawberries associated with investigating and comparing their neuroprotective effects in a rat model of aging. Female Wistar rats were orally pretreated with fresh, boiled, and frozen methanolic extracts (250 mg kg) for 2 weeks, and then these extracts were concomitantly exposed to D-galactose [65 mg kg, subcutaneously (S/C)] and AlCl (200 mg kg, orally) for 6 weeks to develop aging-like symptoms. The results of UPLC/ESI-MS phytochemical profiling revealed 36 secondary metabolites, including phenolics, flavonoids, and their glycoside derivatives. Compared with boiled and frozen extracts, the fresh extract ameliorated the behavioral deficits including anxiety and cognitive dysfunction, upregulated brain HO-1 and Nrf2 levels, and markedly reduced caspase-3 and PPAR-γ levels. Moreover, LDH and miRNA-9, 124 and 132 protein expressions were reduced. The histological architecture of the brain hippocampus was restored and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) immunoexpression was downregulated. In conclusion, the fresh extract has neuroprotective activity that could have a promising role in ameliorating age-related neurodegeneration.

Khalil, H. M. A., R. A. Azouz, H. F. Hozyen, S. H. Aljuaydi, H. O. AbuBakr, S. R. Emam, and A. K. Al-Mokaddem, "Selenium nanoparticles impart robust neuroprotection against deltamethrin-induced neurotoxicity in male rats by reversing behavioral alterations, oxidative damage, apoptosis, and neuronal loss.", Neurotoxicology, vol. 91, pp. 329-339, 2022. Abstract

This study investigated the neuroprotective role of selenium nanoparticles (SeNPs) on deltamethrin-induced neurotoxicity in rats. A total of 32 adult male Wister rats were allocated into the following four groups: 1) control, 2) deltamethrin (0.6 mg/kg), 3) SeNPs (0.5 mg/kg), and 4) deltamethrin + SeNPs. All agents were administered orally three times per week for 2 months. Locomotor behavior, anxiety-like behavior, biochemical parameters, including brain oxidative damage biomarkers (Malondialdehyde (MDA) and reduced glutathione (GSH)), brain acetylcholinesterase (AChE), and brain genotoxicity were evaluated. The gene expression levels of IGF-1 and Bcl were also determined. Moreover, a brain histopathological examination associated with the immunohistochemical determination of Bax in brain tissue was performed. Deltamethrin-intoxicated rats showed a reduction in the locomotor activity associated with a highly anxious state. They also displayed a disturbance in the brain redox state with a decrease in the brain AChE levels and a high DNA fragmentation percentage. Furthermore, they showed a decrement in the immunohistochemical GFAP levels as well as IGF-1 and Bcl gene expression levels with an increase in the immunohistochemical Bax levels. All these changes were confirmed by brain histopathology. Interestingly, SeNPs ameliorated all these changes and restored the normal brain architecture. In conclusion. SeNPs possess a potent medicinal activity due to their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity. Therefore, SeNPs can be a potential agent in ameliorating deltamethrin-induced neurotoxicity.

Hamdan, D. I., R. A. El-Shiekh, M. A. El-Sayed, H. M. A. Khalil, M. R. Mousa, A. A. Al-Gendy, and A. M. El-Shazly, "Phytochemical characterization and anti-inflammatory potential of Egyptian Murcott mandarin cultivar waste (stem, leaves and peel).", Food & function, vol. 11, issue 9, pp. 8214-8236, 2020. Abstract

The stem (S), leaf (L) and fruit peel (P) of Murcott mandarins were separately extracted using 80% ethanol and then fractionated into dichloromethane (DCM) and ethyl acetate (ET). Their metabolic profiles were studied via HPLC-PDA-ESI-MS/MS and afforded a tentative characterization of 98 compounds, including free organic acids, phenolic acid derivatives, flavonoid aglycones, flavonoid glycosides, flavonoids containing 3-hydroxyl-3-methylglutaroyl (HMG) units, coumarin derivatives and limonoids. Column chromatography resulted in isolation of six metabolites for the first time that were identified as nobiletin (C1), isosinensetin (C2), limonin (C3), 4'-demethylnobiletin (C4), stigmasterol-O-glucoside (C5) and hesperidin (C6). In vitro studies of the anti-inflammatory activity of DCM-L against cyclooxygenases (COXs) and 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX) enzymes revealed that DCM-L showed higher activity than the other tested fractions. The in vivo gastroprotective effects of that fraction were evaluated using alcohol-induced gastric ulcers in rats. The obtained findings validated the gastroprotective and anti-ulcerogenic activities of DCM-L through its anxiolytic, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-apoptotic effects. Therefore, we recommend the use of Murcott mandarin leaves as a part of a protection strategy for gastric ulcer.

Khalil, H. M. A., D. B. Mahmoud, R. A. El-Shiekh, A. F. Bakr, A. A. Boseila, S. Mehanna, R. A. Naggar, and H. A. Eliwa, "Antidepressant and Cardioprotective Effects of Self-Nanoemulsifying Self-Nanosuspension Loaded with Hypericum perforatum on Post-Myocardial Infarction Depression in Rats.", AAPS PharmSciTech, vol. 23, issue 7, pp. 243, 2022. Abstract

Hypericum perforatum (HP) is characterized by potent medicinal activity. However, the poor water solubility of many HP constituents limits their therapeutic effectiveness. Self-nanoemulsifying self-nanosuspension loaded with HP (HP.SNESNS) was formulated to improve the bioefficacy of HP. It was prepared using 10% triacetin, 57% Tween 20, and 33% PEG 400 and then incorporated with HP extract (100 mg/mL). HP.SNESNS demonstrated a bimodal size distribution (258.65 ± 29.35 and 9.08 ± 0.01 nm) corresponding to nanosuspension and nanoemulsion, respectively, a zeta potential of -8.03 mV, and an enhanced dissolution profile. Compared to the unformulated HP (100 mg/kg), HP.SNESNS significantly improved cardiac functions by decreasing the serum myocardial enzymes, nitric oxide (NO), and tumor necrosis factor- α (TNF-α) as well as restoring the heart tissue's normal architecture. Furthermore, it ameliorates anxiety, depressive-like behavior, and cognitive dysfunction by decreasing brain TNF-α, elevating neurotransmitters (norepinephrine and serotonin), and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). In addition, HP.SNESNS augmented the immunohistochemical expression of cortical and hippocampal glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) levels while downregulating the cortical Bcl-2-associated X protein (Bax) expression levels. Surprisingly, these protective activities were comparable to the HP (300 mg/kg). In conclusion, HP.SNESNS (100 mg/kg) exerted antidepressant and cardioprotective activities in the post-MI depression rat model.

Zaafar, D., H. M. A. Khalil, R. A. Rasheed, R. F. A. Eltelbany, and S. A. Zaitone, "Hesperetin mitigates sorafenib-induced cardiotoxicity in mice through inhibition of the TLR4/NLRP3 signaling pathway.", PloS one, vol. 17, issue 8, pp. e0271631, 2022. Abstract

Sorafenib is an oral multi-kinase receptor inhibitor that targets various signaling pathways. It is used as the first line of treatment in advanced hepatocellular and renal cell carcinomas. Sorafenib was reported to induce cardiotoxicity due to myocyte necrosis. Hesperetin is a naturally occurring flavonoid with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory capabilities. This study investigated the putative protective effect of hesperetin against sorafenib-induced cardiotoxicity in mice through downregulation of NLRP3/TLR4 signaling and inhibition of apoptosis. Twenty-four male Swiss mice were distributed into four groups: untreated control, hesperetin (50 mg/kg/day, orally), sorafenib (100 mg/kg/day, orally), and combination (Hesperetin+Sorafenib). After a three-week treatment period, various biochemical parameters in cardiac tissues were assessed. TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-6 levels were measured. Moreover, TLR4 and NLRP3 expressions were evaluated using Western blot analysis. Histopathological examination and immunohistochemical assessment of apoptotic activity were done. Compared with the sorafenib group, the combination group exhibited reduced TNF-α, IL-1β, IL-6 levels and lower NLRP3/TLR4 expressions. Histologically, the combination group showed improved myocardial histology and a marked decrease in collagen deposition. Immunohistochemical examination showed decreased caspase-3 and increased Bcl-2 expression. Before recommending hesperetin as an adjuvant, clinical studies are warranted for mitigating sorafenib cardiotoxicity.

Khalil, H. M. A., I. A. Khalil, A. K. Al-Mokaddem, M. Hassan, R. A. El-Shiekh, H. A. Eliwa, A. M. Tawfek, and W. H. El-Maadawy, "Ashwagandha-loaded nanocapsules improved the behavioral alterations, and blocked MAPK and induced Nrf2 signaling pathways in a hepatic encephalopathy rat model.", Drug delivery and translational research, 2022. Abstract

Ashwagandha (ASH), a vital herb in Ayurvedic medicine, demonstrated potent preclinical hepato- and neuroprotective effects. However, its efficacy is limited due to low oral bioavailability. Accordingly, we encapsulated ASH extract in chitosan-alginate bipolymeric nanocapsules (ASH-BPNCs) to enhance its physical stability and therapeutic effectiveness in the gastrointestinal tract. ASH-BPNC was prepared by emulsification followed by sonication. The NCs showed small particle size (< 220 nm), zeta-potential of 25.2 mV, relatively high entrapment efficiency (79%), physical stability at acidic and neutral pH, and in vitro release profile that extended over 48 h. ASH-BPNC was then investigated in a thioacetamide-induced hepatic encephalopathy (HE) rat model. Compared with free ASH, ASH-BPNC improved survival, neurological score, general motor activity, and cognitive task-performance. ASH-BPNC restored ALT, AST and ammonia serum levels, and maintained hepatic and brain architecture. ASH-BPNC also restored GSH, MDA, and glutathione synthetase levels, and Nrf2 and MAPK signaling pathways in liver and brain tissues. Moreover, ASH-BPNC downregulated hepatic NF-κB immunohistochemical expression. Moreover, the in vivo biodistribution studies demonstrated that most of the administered ASH-BPNC is accumulated in the brain and hepatic tissues. In conclusion, chitosan-alginate BPNCs enhanced the hepatoprotective and neuroprotective effects of ASH, thus providing a promising therapeutic approach for HE.

Ali, M. - A., M. M. Khalil, A. K. Al-Mokaddem, S. H. Aljuaydi, M. M. Ahmed, and H. M. A. Khalil, "Differential effects of cancer modifying agents during radiation therapy on Ehrlich solid tumor-bearing mice: A comparative investigation of metformin and ascorbic acid.", Applied radiation and isotopes : including data, instrumentation and methods for use in agriculture, industry and medicine, vol. 187, pp. 110305, 2022. Abstract

BACKGROUND: This work was carried out to compare the modifying roles of ascorbic and metformin during Ehrlich (ESC) tumor-bearing mice irradiation.

METHODS: Fifty Swiss albino male mice were segmented into seven groups, including one control group and six Ehrlich induced tumors treated with ascorbic, ascorbic plus radiation, metformin, metformin plus radiation, and radiation only. Many tests, including behavioral, biochemical, immunohistochemistry, gene expression, DNA fragmentation, oxidative stress markers, and EPR, were performed to interrogate the modifying effects on tumor and liver tissues.

RESULTS: Remarkable apoptosis was found in metformin irradiated animals compared to irradiated ascorbic counterparts. The irradiated metformin mice showed the greatest reduction in PCNA. There was a significant reduction of DNA fragmentation in the liver tissues of the irradiated metformin group. Irradiated metformin and irradiated ascorbic acid animals showed a reduced signal of ERK as well as c-Fos genes. There was a tendency of metformin and metformin irradiated animals to reduce MDA levels in liver tissues. ESC-bearing mice treated with ascorbic or metformin showed an improvement in the spontaneous alternation percentage (SAP%) and improved short-term memory. There was also an improvement in long memory tests.

CONCLUSIONS: The study added more preclinical evidence on the utility of metformin in cancer treatment during radiotherapy. Metformin was shown to reduce lipid peroxidation in irradiated healthy tissues, increase tumor cytotoxicity, downregulate critical pathways involved in tumor progression and proliferation, and enhance tumor apoptosis. Controlled clinical trials using metformin are highly warranted.

Hamdan, D. I., S. S. Hafez, W. H. B. Hassan, M. M. Morsi, H. M. A. Khalil, Y. H. Ahmed, O. A. Ahmed-Farid, and R. A. El-Shiekh, "Chemical profiles with cardioprotective and anti-depressive effects of Miq. leaves and stem branches dichloromethane fractions on isoprenaline induced post-MI depression.", RSC advances, vol. 12, issue 6, pp. 3476-3493, 2022. Abstract

This study was conducted to explore the potential cardioprotective and anti-depressive effects of dichloromethane (DCM) fractions of leaves (L) and stem branches (S) on post-myocardial infarction (MI) depression induced by isoprenaline (ISO) in rats in relation to their metabolites. The study was propped with a UPLC-ESI-MS/MS profiling and chromatographic isolation of the secondary metabolites. Column chromatography revealed the isolation of lupeol palmitate (6) that was isolated for the first time from nature with eight known compounds. In addition, more than forty metabolites belonging, mainly to flavonoids, and anthocyanins groups were identified. The rats were injected with ISO (85 mg kg, s.c) in the first two days, followed by the administration of DCM-L and DCM-S fractions (200 mg kg p.o) for 19 days. Compared with the ISO exposed rats, the treated rats displayed a reduction in cardiac biomarkers (LDH and CKMB), anxiety, and depressive-like behaviour associated with an increase in the brain defense system (SOD and GSH), neuronal cell energy, GABA, serotonin, and dopamine, confirmed by histopathological investigations. In conclusion, DCM-L and DCM-S fractions' cardioprotective and anti-depressive activities are attributed to their metabolite profile. Therefore, they could serve as a potential agent in amending post-MI depression.

Khalil, H. M. A., H. A. Eliwa, R. A. El-Shiekh, A. K. Al-Mokaddem, M. Hassan, A. M. Tawfek, and W. H. El-Maadawy, "Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) root extract attenuates hepatic and cognitive deficits in thioacetamide-induced rat model of hepatic encephalopathy via induction of Nrf2/HO-1 and mitigation of NF-κB/MAPK signaling pathways.", Journal of ethnopharmacology, vol. 277, pp. 114141, 2021. Abstract

ETHNOPHARMACOLOGICAL RELEVANCE: Ashwagandha (ASH) is one of the medicinal plants used in traditional Indian, Ayurvedic, and Unani medicines for their broad range of pharmacological activities including, tonic, aphrodisiac, energy stimulant, and counteracting chronic fatigue. Besides, it is used in the treatment of nervous exhaustion, memory-related conditions, insomnia, as well as improving learning ability and memory capacity. ASH is preclinically proven to be efficient in hepatoprotection and improving cognitive impairment, however, its beneficial effects against hepatic encephalopathy (HE) is still unclear. Therefore, this study aimed at investigating the protective effects of ASH root extract against thioacetamide (TAA)-induced HE and delineate the underlying behavioral and pharmacological mechanisms.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: ASH metabolites were identified using UPLC-HRMS. Rats were pretreated with ASH (200 and 400 mg/kg) for 29 days and administrated TAA (i.p, 350 mg/kg) in a single dose. Then, behavioral (open field test, Y-maze, modified elevated plus maze and novel object recognition test), and biochemical (ammonia and hepatic toxicity indices) assessments, as well as oxidative stress markers (MDA and GSH) were evaluated. The hepatic and brain levels of glutamine synthetase (GS), nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), heme-oxygenase (HO)-1, inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) were detected by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The mRNA expressions of p38/ERK½ were determined using real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Moreover, histopathological investigations and immunohistochemical (NF-κB and TNF-α immunohistochemical expressions) examinations were performed.

RESULTS: Metabolite profiling of ASH revealed more than 45 identified metabolites including phenolic acids, flavonoids and steroidal lactone triterpenoids. Compared to the TAA-intoxicated group, ASH improved the locomotor and cognitive deficits, serum hepatotoxicity indices and ammonia levels, as well as brain and hepatic histopathological alterations. ASH reduced hepatic and brain levels of MDA, GS, and iNOS, and increased their GSH, Nrf2, and HO-1 levels. Also, ASH downregulated p38 and ERK½ mRNA expressions, and NF-κB and TNF-α immunohistochemical expressions in brain and hepatic tissues.

CONCLUSIONS: Our results provided insights into the promising hepato- and neuroprotective effects of ASH, with superiority to 400 mg/kg ASH, to ameliorate HE with its sequential hyperammonemia and liver/brain injuries. This could be attributed to the recorded increase in the spontaneous alternation % and recognition index, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities, as well as upregulation of Nrf2 and downregualtion of MAPK signaling pathways.

Hamdan, D. I., S. Salah, W. H. B. Hassan, M. Morsi, H. M. A. Khalil, O. A. - H. Ahmed-Farid, R. A. El-Shiekh, M. A. E. Nael, and A. M. Elissawy, "Anticancer and Neuroprotective Activities of Ethyl Acetate Fractions from Miq. Plant Organs with Ultraperformance Liquid Chromatography-Electrospray Ionization-Tandem Mass Spectrometry Profiling.", ACS omega, vol. 7, issue 18, pp. 16013-16027, 2022. Abstract

Column chromatography afforded the isolation of seven secondary metabolites (1-(2,4,6-trihydroxy phenyl)-ethanone-4--β-d-glucopyranoside, naringenin-7--β-d-glucopyranoside, kaempferol-3--α-l-rhamnoside, kaempferol-3--β-d-glucopyranoside, quercetin-3--β-d-glucopyranoside, quercetin-3--β-d-galactopyranoside, rutin) from the ethyl acetate (ET) fractions of Miq. stems (S), leaves (L), and fruits (F). Their identification based on ultraviolet (UV), electron ionization (EI), electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry (ESI-MS), and 1D and 2D NMR data. In addition, profiling of ET fractions using ultraperformance liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-ESI-MS/MS) resulted in the identification of 82 compounds belonging to different classes, mainly polyphenolic constituents. Chemical profiling as well as molecular docking directed us to biological evaluation. Interestingly, the ET-L fraction exhibited a robust cytotoxic activity against HepG-2, MCF-7, and HELA cell lines. Also, it displayed a neuromodulatory activity against cisplatin neurotoxicity in rats by ameliorating the neurobehavioral dysfunction visualized in the open field and Y-maze test and modulating the neurochemical parameters such as brain amino acid levels (glutamate, aspartate, serine, and histidine), oxidative stress markers (GSH, MDA, and 8-hydroxy-2'-deoxyguanosine), and purinergic cell energy (adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and adenosine monophosphate (AMP)). In conclusion, the isolated compounds (kaempferol-3--β-glucoside and quercetin-3--β-glucoside) from the ET-L fraction could serve as potent anticancer agents due to their strong antioxidant, cytotoxicity, and neuroprotective activity.