Inês Maria Araújo

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Huntington's disease (HD) is a devastating neurodegenerative disorder caused by an expanded CAG repeat in the gene encoding huntingtin, a protein of unknown function. Mutant huntingtin forms intracellular aggregates and is associated with neuronal death in select brain regions. The most studied mouse model (R6/2) of HD replicates many features of the(More)
OBJECTIVE To investigate whether the motor and neuroprotective effects of adenosine A(2A) receptor (A(2A)R) antagonists are mediated by distinct cell types in the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) model of Parkinson's disease. METHODS We used the forebrain A(2A)R knock-out mice coupled with flow cytometric analyses and(More)
Neuropeptide Y (NPY) is a 36 amino acid peptide widely present in the CNS, including the retina. Previous studies have demonstrated that NPY promotes cell proliferation of rat post-natal hippocampal and olfactory epithelium precursor cells. The aim of this work was to investigate the role of NPY on cell proliferation of rat retinal neural cells. For this(More)
The adrenal chromaffin cells synthesize and release catecholamine (mostly epinephrine and norepinephrine) and different peptides, such as the neuropeptide Y (NPY). NPY stimulates catecholamine release through NPY Y1 receptor in mouse chromaffin cells. The aim of our study was to determine the intracellular signaling events coupled to NPY Y1 receptor(More)
In this work, we investigated the involvement of calpains in the neurotoxicity induced by short-term exposure to kainate (KA) in non-desensitizing conditions of AMPA receptor activation (cyclothiazide present, CTZ), in cultured rat hippocampal neurons. The calpain inhibitor MDL28170 had a protective effect in cultures treated with KA plus CTZ (p < 0.01),(More)
We investigated whether cell proliferation and neurogenesis are altered in R6/2 transgenic Huntington's disease mice. Using bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU), we found a progressive decrease in the number of proliferating cells in the dentate gyrus of R6/2 mice. This reduction was detected in pre-symptomatic mice, and by 11.5 weeks, R6/2 mice had 66% fewer newly(More)
PURPOSE Newly designed antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) are being evaluated for their efficacy in preventing seizures and for their toxic profiles. We investigated and compared the toxic effects of two dibenz[b,f]azepine derivatives with anticonvulsant activity, 10,11-dihydro-10-hydroxyimino-5H-dibenz[b,f]azepine-5-carboxamide (BIA2-024) and(More)
Evidence for increased calpain activity has been described in the hippocampus of rodent models of temporal lobe epilepsy. However, it is not known whether calpains are involved in the cell death that accompanies seizures. In this work, we characterized calpain activation by examining the proteolysis of calpain substrates and in parallel we followed cell(More)
Calpains are ubiquitous proteases involved in cell proliferation, adhesion and motility. In the brain, calpains have been associated with neuronal damage in both acute and neurodegenerative disorders, but their physiological function in the nervous system remains elusive. During brain ischemia, there is a large increase in the levels of intracellular(More)
Proteolytic cleavage of the Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchanger (NCX) by calpains impairs calcium homeostasis, leading to a delayed calcium overload and excitotoxic cell death. However, it is not known whether reversal of the exchanger contributes to activate calpains and trigger neuronal death. We investigated the role of the reversal of the NCX in Ca(2+) dynamics,(More)