Cytotoxic and cytoprotective effects of tryptamine-4,5-dione on neuronal cells: a double-edged sword

Naoko Suga, Akira Murakami, Yoshimasa Nakamura, Akari Ishisaka, Noritoshi Kitamoto, Mikiko Ito, Yoji Kato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine) is a putative substrate for myeloperoxidase, which may convert it into the reactive quinone tryptamine-4,5-dione (TD). In this study, we found that the viability of human SH-SY5Y neuroblastoma cells treated with 25 μM TD was increased to approximately 117%. On the other hand, the cell viability was significantly decreased by exposure to TD (150–200 μM), with an increase in intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS). Interestingly, pre-treatment of SH-SY5Y cells with 100 μM TD prevented cell death and suppressed intracellular ROS generation evoked by the addition of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). Expression of the phase-II antioxidant enzyme NAD(P)H: quinone oxidoreductase 1 and haem oxygenase 1 were upregulated by TD at a concentration of 50–100 μM. Nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), the regulator of these enzyme, was translocated from the cytosol to the nucleus by 100 μM TD. In summary, moderate concentrations of TD may increase the self-defence capacity of neuronal cells against oxidative stress.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)545-553
Number of pages9
JournalFree Radical Research
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 4 2017


  • cytotoxicity
  • haem oxygenase 1
  • neuronal cells
  • quinone
  • quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


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