Anti-inflammatory role of sesamin in STZ induced mice model of diabetic retinopathy

Saif Ahmad, Nehal M. ElSherbiny, Mohammad Sarwar Jamal, Faisal A. Alzahrani, Rizwanul Haque, Raziuddin Khan, Syed Kashif Zaidi, Mohammed H. AlQahtani, Gregory I. Liou, Kanchan Bhatia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Diabetic retinopathy (DR) is the common cause of diabetic vascular complications that leads to the blindness in the working age population throughout the world. Free radicals mediated oxidative stress and inflammation play a significant role in pathophysiology of DR. To find a new and safe drug to treat DR is still challenging and for that purpose the natural compounds may be therapeutic agents. Here we show that sesamin (SES) which is the main components of sesame seed and its oil, and has been reported as potent antioxidant and neuroprotective, could be a therapeutic agent in DR. In the present study, we investigated protective effect of SES in Streptozotocin (STZ) induced DR in mice. The mice were divided into three groups (Control, DR and DR+SES) for the study. After two weeks post-diabetic establishment, mice were treated with SES (30 mg/kg BW, i.p, alternate day) for four weeks. Mice body weight and blood glucose level were measured from each group. The microglial activation of retina was determined by immunohistochemistry analysis by using Iba-1 as a microglia marker. Retinal mRNA levels of Iba-1, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and Intercellular Adhesion Molecule 1 (ICAM-1) were examined by qRT-PCR. The level of iNOS protein expression was examined by immunoblotting. Together these data demonstrate that SES treatment lowered the progression of diabetic retinal injury by: 1) decreasing blood glucose level, 2) suppressing microglia activation, 3) reducing retinal TNF-α and ICAM-1 levels and 4) quenching iNOS expression. In conclusion, the results suggest that SES treatment may be of therapeutic benefit in reducing the progression of DR by ameliorating hyperglycemia and inflammation in diabetic retina.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47-53
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neuroimmunology
StatePublished - Jun 15 2016


  • Anti-inflammation
  • Cytokines
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Microglia
  • Sesamin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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