New scientific research has increasingly focused on identifying natural compounds that can combat age-related cognitive decline and support healthy aging. Trigonelline (TG), a plant alkaloid present in coffee, fenugreek seeds, and radish, has emerged as a promising candidate for enhancing cognitive functions.
In a groundbreaking study, scientists from the University of Tsukuba investigated TG’s effects on memory and spatial learning, taking an integrated approach from both cognitive and molecular biology perspectives. They utilized a senescence-accelerated mouse prone 8 (SAMP8) model for their research.
Key Study Findings
Following the oral administration of TG to SAMP8 mice for a period of 30 days, the Morris water maze test showed a significant improvement in spatial learning and memory performance compared to SAMP8 mice that did not receive TG.
In addition, through whole-genome transcriptomic analysis of the hippocampus, the researchers discovered that the TG group exhibited significant modulations in signaling pathways related to nervous system development, mitochondrial function, ATP synthesis, inflammation, autophagy, and neurotransmitter release.
Molecular Insights and Conclusions
Furthermore, the study revealed that TG suppressed neuroinflammation by negatively regulating the signaling factor Traf6-mediated activation of the transcription factor NF-κB.
Additionally, quantitative protein analysis confirmed a significant decrease in the levels of inflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IL-6, and a substantial increase in the levels of neurotransmitters dopamine, noradrenaline, and serotonin in the hippocampus of mice administered with TG.
These compelling findings point to the potential of TG in preventing and alleviating age-related spatial learning memory impairment.
Reference: “Transcriptomics and biochemical evidence of trigonelline ameliorating learning and memory decline in the senescence-accelerated mouse prone 8 (SAMP8) model by suppressing proinflammatory cytokines and elevating neurotransmitter release” by Sharmin Aktar, Farhana Ferdousi, Shinji Kondo, Tamami Kagawa and Hiroko Isoda, 18 September 2023, GeroScience.
This work was supported by DyDo DRINCO and Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST grant number JPMJPF2017).