To study whether an extremely low frequency magnetic field is capable to induce the transcription factor NF-E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2; involved in regulation of the antioxidant system) nuclear translocation in an animal model of Huntington's disease.
The animals were divided into three groups (4 animals per group): i) control group, ii) 3-nitropropionic acid (3-NP)-treated rats (20 mg/kg body weight) for four consecutive days and iii) 3-NP-treated rats + magnetic field exposure.
3-NP is a neurotoxin and an inhibitor of the succinate dehydrogenase enzyme. This toxin causes changes similar to those occurring in Huntington's disease.
Exposure duration: 4 h/day for 8 days (see add. information)
|Setup||pair of Helmholtz coils with a diameter of 7 cm; each coil consisting of 1000 turns of enamelled copper wire and placed in a 10.5 cm x 10.5 cm x 3.5 cm plastic box; animal placed in a cylindrical plastic cage designed to keep it immobilized while receiving magnetic stimulation to its head; cage positioned between the coils|
|Sham exposure||A sham exposure was conducted.|
|Additional info||exposure time: 2 h in the morning and 2 h in the afternoon; exposure starting 4 days before the first injection with 3-NP|
|magnetic flux density||0.7 mT||-||-||-||-|
The data showed that 3-NP caused a reduction in Nrf2 expression in both cytoplasm and nucleus, while the magnetic stimulation applied to 3-NP-treated rats triggered an increase in cytoplasm and nucleus Nrf2 levels.
The authors conclude that transcranial magnetic stimulation modulates Nrf2 protein expression and translocation and that these mechanisms may partly explain the neuroprotective effect of transcranial magnetic stimulation, as well as its antioxidant and cell protection capacity.