Incensole acetate reduces depressive-like behavior and modulates hippocampal BDNF and CRF expression of submissive animals

Arieh Moussaieff, Moshe Gross, Elimelech Nesher, Tatiana Tikhonov, Gal Yadid, Albert Pinhasov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations

Abstract

Incensole acetate (IA), a constituent of Boswellia resin ('frankincense'), was previously demonstrated to exhibit an antidepressive-like effect in the Forced Swim Test (FST) in mice following single dose administration (50 mg/kg). Here, we show that acute administration of considerably lower dose (10 mg/kg) IA to selectively bred mice, showing prominent submissive behavior, exerted significant antidepressant-like effects in the FST. Furthermore, chronic administration of 1 or 5 mg/kg per day of IA for three consecutive weeks dose- and time-dependently reduced the submissiveness of the mice in the Dominant-Submissive Relationship test, developed to screen the chronic effect of antidepressants. This behavioral effect was concomitant to reduced serum corticosterone levels, dose-dependent down-regulation of corticotropin releasing factor and up-regulation of brain derived neurotrophic factor transcripts IV and VI expression in the hippocampus. These data suggest that IA modulates the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and influences hippocampal gene expression, leading to beneficial behavioral effects supporting its potential as a novel treatment of depressive-like disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1584-1593
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Psychopharmacology
Volume26
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2012

Keywords

  • Incensole acetate
  • brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF)
  • corticosterone
  • corticotrophin releasing factor (CRF)
  • depression
  • dominant-submissive relationship (DSR)

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