Current studies demonstrated that traditional Chinese herbal formula Danggui-Shaoyao-San (DSS) is not only used for the treatment of menstrual disorder, but has also found its use in neurological diseases. However, the neuroprotective role of DSS on ischemia-induced brain injury is still unclear. The aim of the present study is to explore the effect of DSS in ischemic brain injury. Total 30 adult female Sprague-Dawley rats underwent 90 min transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). DSS (600 mg/kg) was administered through the intragastric route at the time of reperfusion and then performed every day thereafter until sacrifice. Results showed that DSS treatment significantly improved neurobehavioral outcomes (N=10 per group, P < 0.05). Immunohistochemical staining showed that microvessel density in the perifocal region of DSS-treated rats was significantly increased compared to the saline-treated group (N=4 per group, P < 0.01). Similarly, the numbers of BrdU+/DCX+ cells in the subventricular zone were increased in DSS-treated rats compared to the saline-treated group (P < 0.05). Furthermore, we demonstrated that DSS treatment activated vascular endothelial growth factor (N=4 per group,P < 0.05) and promoted eNOS phosphorylation (N=4 per group, P < 0.05). Thus, we concluded that DSS promoted focal angiogenesis and neurogenesis, and attenuated ischemia-induced brain injury in rats after MCAO, suggesting that DSS is a potential drug for ischemic stroke therapy.
- Ischemic stroke