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  • Author or Editor: Alok Kumar x
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Background: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a degenerative disease characterized by progressive depletion of motor neurons in brain, brain stem, and spinal cord, whereas Hirayama disease (HD) results from anterior horn cell loss in the lower cervical cord. On the other hand, matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are known to digest components of the extracellular matrix. Of these, MMP-9 is considered as a marker of neuroinflammation. Materials and methods: We have measured MMP-9 levels in the serum of 30 patients with ALS, 10 patients of HD, and 25 healthy controls using ELISA method. Results: MMP-9 levels were significantly elevated in the patients suffering from ALS (P < 0.01) and HD (P < 0.05). Furthermore, MMP-9 levels in ALS have a significant positive correlation (R 2 = 0.9) with the duration of the disease. Conclusions: These results suggest that neuroinflammation is an underlying component in ALS pathology and further opens up the search for suitable biomarkers.

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Fresh pods of Moringa oleifera with nutraceutical importance are widely consumed in food commodities as vegetables. It is nutritious and it also has several biological activities. In the present study, a simple, rapid, cost-effective, and sensitive high-performance thin-layer chromatography (HPTLC) method was applied for the simultaneous determination of six phenolic compounds, viz., gallic (phenolic acid), p-coumaric, caffeic acid (hydroxycinnamic acid), chlorogenic acid (cinnamic acid derivative), quercetin and kaempferol (flavonols) in flowers, pods, leaves, twigs, and seeds of M. oleifera. Simultaneous separation and quantification of compounds were achieved on HPTLC pre-coated silica gel 60 F254 aluminum plates using the mobile phase toluene–ethyl acetate–formic acid (14:10:1). Densitometric determination was carried out at λ max 282 nm. The calibration curves were linear, ranged between 0.984 and 0.998; the limit of detection and quantification ranged between 110.8 ng mL−1 and 142.3 ng mL−1, and 301.6 ng μL−1 and 410.8 ng μL−1; and recovery ranged between 96.2% and 97.9%. The validated method was successively used to analyze the above compounds in the plant parts of M. oleifera. The amount of the total phenolic content and specific phenolic compounds ranged from 4.86 mg g−1 (gallic acid equivalent [GAE]) to 14.79 mg g−1 (GAE) and 0.007% quercetin (flower and flower with pods) to 0.099% gallic acid (pods of 15 days). This study reveals that the presence of specific phenolic compounds in M. oleifera shall be a good source for the isolation of the above-mentioned compounds for industrial use.

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