Jacobs Journal of Psychiatry and Behavioural Science
Attenuation of Anxiety/Depression-like Behaviors and Neuroanatomical Changes Following Quercetin and Rutin Exposure in Zebrafish (Danio rerio)
Published on: 2015-05-10
The flavonoids quercetin and rutin, present in a variety of fruits, vegetables, and medicinal plants such as St. John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum), are known to have wide-ranging beneficial effects on human health. The aim of this study was to clarify the mechanisms-of-action underlying changes in anxiety/depression-related behaviors and the neuroanatomical components affected following exposure to quercetin and rutin in zebrafish (Danio rerio). Employing behavioral and histological analysis, behavioral improvement similar to that of fluoxetine (Prozac®) treatment and significant upregulation of hippocampal serotonergic and dopaminergic neurons was observed in zebrafish treated with both quercetin and rutin. It is indicated, based on the results of this study, that quercetin and rutin mediate their antidepressant effects through dopaminergic and serotonergic neurotransmission and that dietary quercetin and rutin are promising as antidepressant- like compounds, and possible neuroactive pharmaceutical lead structures. Therefore, further investigations of these and additional secondary plant metabolites for potential antidepressant properties are needed.