We recently reported that the periodontopathic bacteria Porphyromonas gingivalis (P. gingi-valis) initiates an inflammatory cascade that disrupts the balance of reactive oxygen species (ROS), resulting in apoptotic cell death in brain endothelial cells. An extract from Polygonum multiflorum Thunb., 2,3,5,4′-Tetrahydroxystilbene-2-O-β-glucoside (THSG) has been well-reported to diminish the inflammation in many disease models. However, the effects of THSG in the area of the brain–oral axis is unknown. In this study, we examined the effects of THSG in P. gingivalis-stimulated inflammatory response and apoptotic cell death in brain endothelial cells. THSG treatment remarkably lessened the upregulation of IL-1β and TNF-α proteins in bEnd.3 cells infected with P. gingivalis. Treatment of THSG further ameliorated brain endothelial cell death, including apoptosis caused by P. gingivalis. Moreover, the present study showed that the inhibitory effects on NF-κB p65 and antiapoptotic properties of THSG is through inhibiting the ROS pathway. Importantly, the ROS inhibitory potency of THSG is similar to a ROS scavenger N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine (NAC) and NADPH oxidase inhibitor apocynin. Furthermore, the protective effect of THSG from P. gingivalis infection was further con-firmed in primary mouse brain endothelial cells. Taken together, this study indicates that THSG attenuates an ROS-dependent inflammatory response and cell apoptosis in P. gingivalis-infected brain endothelial cells. Our results also suggest that THSG could be a potential herbal medicine to prevent the risk of developing cerebrovascular diseases from infection of periodontal bacteria.
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