Involvement of glycemic control in the inhibiting effect of Morinda citrifolia on cerebral ischemia-induced neuronal damage

Harada S, Fujita-Hamabe W, Kamiya K, Satake T, Tokuyama S.

Department of Clinical Pharmacy, Kobe Gakuin University, Kobe, Japan.


Fruit juice of Morinda citrifolia (Rubiaceae, Noni juice) is a well-known healthy drink and has various pharmacological properties including antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. We have hitherto found the protective effect of Noni juice on neuronal damage caused by ischemic stress in mice. In addition, we have also recently reported that suppression of post-ischemic glucose intolerance might be important for good prognosis.

Here, we focused on the effect of Noni juice on the development of the post-ischemic glucose intolerance as a cerebral protective mechanism. Noni juice was obtained from the mature fruit grown in Okinawa (ONJ). Male ddY mice were given 10% ONJ in drinking water for 7 d. Then, mice were subjected to 2 h of middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). We found that 10% ONJ treatment suppressed the development of neuronal damage after MCAO. Interestingly, glucose intolerance observed on 1 d after MCAO completely disappeared by 10% ONJ. Furthermore, 10% ONJ treatment significantly increased serum insulin levels much further than the control group on 1 d, while serum adiponectin levels were not affected at all.

These results suggest that ONJ could facilitate insulin secretion and may attenuate the development of glucose intolerance under ischemic stress. These functions may contribute to the neuronal protective effect of ONJ against ischemic stress.

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