• Vibha Dwivedi

      Articles written in Journal of Biosciences

    • Suppression of induced but not developmental apoptosis in Drosophila by Ayurvedic Amalaki Rasayana and Rasa-Sindoor

      Vibha Dwivedi Shweta Tiwary Subhash C Lakhotia

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      Earlier we showed formulation-specific beneficial effects of dietary supplement of Ayurvedic Amalaki Rasayana (AR, a herbal formulation) and Rasa-Sindoor (RS, a mercury-based organo-metallic formulation) on various biological parameters in Drosophila, parallel to traditional Ayurvedic literature. These formulations also suppressed cell death and pathology in fly models of neurodegeneration. To understand basis of inhibition of apoptosis, we examined effects of AR and RS on induced and developmental apoptosis in Drosophila. Dietary AR or RS significantly reduced apoptosis induced by GMR-GAL4-, sev-GAL4- or hs-GAL4-directed expression of Rpr, Hid or Grim (RHG) pro-apoptotic proteins or by GMR-GAL4-directed DIAP1-RNAi, resulting in significant restoration of organism's viability and eye morphology. AR or RS supplement enhanced levels of inhibitor of apoptosis proteins, DIAP1 and DIAP2, and of Bancal/Hrb57A, while the levels of RHG proteins and of initiator Dronc and effecter Drice caspases were reduced in non-apoptotic wild type as well as in RHG over-expressing tissues. Levels of Dronc or Drice remained unaffected in cells developmentally destined to die so that developmental apoptosis occurred normally. Elevated levels of DIAPs and reduced levels of RHG proteins and caspases reflect a more robust physiological state of AR or RS fed organisms allowing them to tolerate greater insults without triggering the cell-death response. Such homeo-static effects of these Rasayanas seem to contribute to ‘healthy ageing’, one of their effects suggested in traditional Ayurvedic practices.

    • Ayurvedic Amalaki Rasayana promotes improved stress tolerance and thus has anti-aging effects in Drosophila melanogaster

      VIBHA DWIVEDI SUBHASH C LAKHOTIA

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      Amalaki Rasayana (AR) is a common Ayurvedic herbal formulation of Phyllanthus emblica fruits and some otheringredients, and is used for general good health and healthy aging. We reported it to improve life history traits and tosuppress neurodegeneration as well as induced apoptosis in Drosophila. The present study examines responses ofDrosophila reared on AR-supplemented food to crowding, thermal or oxidative stresses. Wild-type larvae/flies rearedon AR-supplemented food survived the various cell stresses much better than those reared on control food. AR-fedmutant park13 or DJ-1βDelta93 (Parkinson’s disease model) larvae/flies, however, showed only partial or no protection,respectively, against paraquat-induced oxidative stress, indicating essentiality of DJ-1β for AR-mediated oxidativestress tolerance. AR feeding reduced the accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and lipid peroxidation evenin aged (35-day-old) wild-type flies while enhancing superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity. We show that while Hsp70or Hsp83 expression under normal or stress conditions was not affected by AR feeding, Hsp27 levels were elevated inAR-fed wild-type control as well as heat-shocked larvae. Therefore, besides the known anti-oxidant activity ofPhyllanthus emblica fruits, dietary AR also enhances cellular levels of Hsp27. Our in vivo study on a model organismshows that AR feeding significantly improves tolerance to a variety of cell stresses through reduced ROS and lipidperoxidation on the one hand, and enhanced SOD activity and Hsp27 on the other. The resulting better homeostasisimproves life span and quality of organism’s life.

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