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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Boston, Massachusetts » Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center On Aging » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #333789

Research Project: Nutrition, Brain, and Aging

Location: Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center On Aging

Title: Anthocyanin-rich blueberry diets enhance protection of critical brain regions exposed to acute levels of 56Fe cosmic radiation

Author
item Poulose, Shibu - Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center On Aging At Tufts University
item Kelly, Megan
item Bielinski, Donna - Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center On Aging At Tufts University
item Miller, Marshall
item Rabin, Bernard - University Of Maryland
item Shukitt-hale, Barbara

Submitted to: Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology Conference
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/28/2016
Publication Date: 4/1/2016
Citation: Poulose, S.M., Kelly, M.E., Bielinski, D.F., Miller, M.G., Rabin, B.M., Shukitt Hale, B. 2016. Anthocyanin-rich blueberry diets enhance protection of critical brain regions exposed to acute levels of 56Fe cosmic radiation. Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology Conference. Vol. 30 No. 1 Supplement 679.4.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The protective effects of anthocyanin-rich blueberries on brain health are well documented and are particularly important under conditions of high oxidative stress which can lead to “accelerated aging”. One such scenario is exposure to space radiation, which consists of high-energy and -charge particles (HZE), which are known to cause cognitive dysfunction, carcinogenic effects, and deleterious neurochemical alterations. In the current study we assessed the effects of 8 weeks of blueberry supplementation in young animals exposed to 56Fe-HZE particles, particularly those effects related to behavior and neurochemical alteration. Acute effects were measured within 4 to 48 h after radiation exposure. Animals were randomized into a “learning” group, which were irradiated prior to conditioning and a “memory” group, which were irradiated between conditioning and testing. Results indicated that the radiation primarily affected the memory group but not the learning group. These effects were dependent on the resilience of the brain to readjust its endogenous anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory systems within specific brain regions, particularly the hippocampus and frontal cortex. Dietary blueberry significantly attenuated hippocampal and fronto-cortical 56Fe irradiation-induced declines in protein carbonyl content, a marker for oxidative protein degradation, relative to controls. Furthermore, dietary blueberry significantly attenuated 56Fe irradiation-induced increases in pro-oxidant NOX2 and pro-inflammatory COX2 and up-regulated Nrf2, a key regulatory protein which is critical for antioxidant response elements (AREs), in both hippocampus and frontal cortex. These findings support the role of diet in combatting the negative effects of exposure to space radiation through the consumption of anthocyanin-rich foods such as blueberry.