Publication Details

Hu, M., Zheng, P., Xie, Y., Boz, Z., Yu, Y., Tang, R., Jones, A., Zheng, K. & Huang, X. (2018). Propionate protects haloperidol-induced neurite lesions mediated by neuropeptide Y. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 12 (Oct), 743-1-743-10.


Haloperidol is a commonly used antipsychotic drug for treating schizophrenia. Clinical imaging studies have found that haloperidol can cause volume loss of human brain tissue, which is supported by animal studies showing that haloperidol reduces the number of synaptic spines. The mechanism remains unknown. Gut microbiota metabolites, short chain fatty acids including propionate, are reported to have neuroprotective effect and influence gene expression. This study aims to investigate the effect and mechanism of propionate in the protection of neurite lesion induced by haloperidol. This study showed that 10 μM haloperidol (clinical relevant dose) impaired neurite length in human blastoma SH-SY5Y cells, which were confirmed by using primary mouse striatal spiny neurons. We found that haloperidol impaired neurite length were accompanied by a decreased neuropeptide Y (NPY) expression, but no effect on GSK3β signaling. Importantly, this project research found that propionate was capable of protecting against haloperidol-induced neurite lesions and preventing NPY reduction. To confirm this finding, we used specific siRNAs targeting NPY which blocked the protective effect of propionate on haloperidol-induced neurite lesions. Furthermore, since NPY is regulated by the nuclear transcription factor CREB, we measured pCREB that was decreased by haloperidol and was normalized by propionate. Therefore, propionate has a protective effect against pCREB-NPY mediated haloperidol-induced neurite lesions.



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