Ramona D'Amico (University of Messina)| Livia Interdonato (University of Messina)| Tiziana Genovese (University of Messina)| Rosanna Di Paola (University of Messina)| Salvatore Cuzzocrea (University of Messina)
Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is the most common benign tumor in males. The incidence of prostate cancer continues to increase, yet our understanding of its causes is very restricted. Palmitoylethanolamide (PEA), a fatty acid amide-signalling molecule has well-known anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects. Nevertheless, PEA does not possess the ability to prevents free radicals formation. Baicalein (BAIC), a bioactive component isolated from a Chinese herbal medicine, has multiple pharmacological activities, such as a strong anti-oxidative effects.
To characterize the impact of inflammatory process and oxidative stress in the degree of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), a common condition in which chronic inflammation plays a crucial role, we investigated the effect of a co-micronized composite containing PEA and BAIC (m(PEA/BAIC) in an in vivo model of BPH as new therapeutic target.
BPH was provoked in rats by daily administration of testosterone propionate (3 mg/kg) for 14 days. This protocol leds to alterations in prostate morphology and increased levels of prostaglandin E2 and dihydrotestosterone as well as of 5α-reductase 1 and 5α-reductase 2 expression. Moreover, testosterone induced marked inflammation in terms of an increase in nuclear translocation of nuclear factor-κB p65 and consequently in IκB-α degradation as well as disregulation of inducible nitric oxide synthase, cyclooxygenase-2 and manganese superoxide dismutase expression and in the apoptosis pathway. Our results show, for the first time, that m(PEA/BAIC) is capable of decreasing prostate weight and dihydrotestosterone production in BPH-induced rats. These effects were most likely correlated to the anti-inflammatory and apoptotic effects of m(PEA/PLD). Accordingly, these results support the view that m(PEA/BAIC) should be further studied as a potent candidate for the management of BPH.