Effect of gangliosides on diacylglycerol content and molecular species in nerve from diabetic rats

Roberto Bianchi, Xi Zhu, Mario G. Fiori, Joseph Eichberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The effects of ganglioside treatment on 1,2-diacylglycerol content and on molecular species in 1,2-diacylglycerol, phosphatidic acid and total diacylglycerolipids, as well as Na+,K+-ATPase activity, were examined in sciatic nerves from streptozotocin-in-duced diabetic rats. Beginning 2 weeks after induction of diabetes, animals were administered mixed bovine brain gangliosides, AGF1, an inner ester derivative of this mixture, or saline for 5 weeks. The levels of 1,2-diacylglycerol and arachidonyl-containing molecular species in age-matched non-diabetic animals were not affected by ganglioside treatment. In nerves from saline-treated diabetic animals, 1,2-diacylglycerol levels were not reduced, but both Na+,K+-ATPase activity and all arachidonoyl-containing species except for 18:0/20:4 1, 2-diacylglycerol were significantly decreased. The content of 1,2-diacylglycerol was lowered by 23 and 16% in bovine brain ganglioside and AGF1-treated diabetic animals, respectively, and the quantity of 18:0/20:4 1,2-diacylglycerol was also selectively reduced. Ganglioside administration did not affect the diminished levels of arachidonoyl-containing molecular species in 1,2-diacylglycerol, phosphatidic acid or diacylglycerolipids in nerve from diabetic rats. In the same nerves, bovine brain gangliosides partially and AGF1 completely restored Na+,K+-ATPase activity. The results suggest that gangliosides depress the content of total 1,2-diacylglycerol and the quantity of 18:0/20:4 1,2-diacylglycerol, specifically, in diabetic nerve. The possible relationship between the corrective action of gangliosides on Na+,K+-ATPase activity and the effect of these substances on 1,2-diacylglycerol molecular species composition and metabolism is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55-61
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmacology
Issue number1-3
Publication statusPublished - Aug 3 1993


  • 1,2-Diacylglycerol
  • Arachidonoyl-containing molecular species
  • Brain gangliosides (bovine)
  • Diabetic neuropathy
  • Diacylglycerolipids
  • Phosphatidic acid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Pharmacology


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