Geraniol ameliorates diabetic nephropathy via interference with miRNA-21/PTEN/Akt/mTORC1 pathway in rats.

El-Said, Y. A. M., N. A. A. Sallam, A. A. - M. Ain-Shoka, and H. A. - T. Abdel-Latif, "Geraniol ameliorates diabetic nephropathy via interference with miRNA-21/PTEN/Akt/mTORC1 pathway in rats.", Naunyn-Schmiedeberg's archives of pharmacology, vol. 393, issue 12, pp. 2325-2337, 2020.


Deregulated activity of protein kinase B/mammalian target of rapamycin complex-1 (Akt/mTORC1) incites crucial pathological characteristics of diabetic nephropathy. The acyclic monoterpene geraniol has been recently reported to possess antidiabetic effects; however, its potential renoprotective effect in diabetes has not yet been elucidated. This study aimed to assess the possible modulatory effect of geraniol on the Akt/mTORC1 pathway in diabetes-induced nephropathy in rats compared to the standard antidiabetic drug gliclazide. Geraniol and gliclazide was administered daily to diabetic rats for 6 weeks starting on the 3rd-day post diabetes induction by streptozotocin (STZ). Geraniol amended the deteriorated renal function (serum creatinine; blood urea nitrogen). It exerted a remarkable antihyperglycemic effect that is comparable to that of gliclazide and suppressed the fibrotic marker, transforming growth factor-β. Geraniol restored redox balance and inhibited lipid peroxidation by reducing nicotine amide adenine dinucleotide phosphate oxidase and enhancing the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase. These beneficial effects were associated with a robust downregulation of miRNA-21 and consequently, reversion of tumor suppressor protein phosphatase and tension homolog (PTEN)/Akt/mTORC1 cue and its downstream proteins required for mesangial cell proliferation and matrix protein synthesis. The current study indicates that geraniol interfered with miRNA-21/ PTEN/AKT/mTORC1 pathway signaling that contributes largely to the progression of mesangial expansion and extracellular matrix deposition in diabetic nephropathy.