An oral prostaglandin E1 (PGE1) analogue, OP-1206 · α-CD, was given to rats with streptozocin (STZ)-induced diabetes to examine the therapeutic effects of OP-1206 on short-term and long-term diabetic neuropathy and its action mechanism with special reference to nerve Na+-K+-ATPase activity. In the short-term experiment, OP-1206 was administered daily to diabetic rats in 3- and 30-mg/kg doses for 4 wk from the day of STZ injection. In the long-term study, 10 μg/kg OP-1206 was also given daily for 8 wk from 7 mo after induction of diabetes. The compound improved decreased sciatic motor nerve conduction velocity in both short-term and long-term diabetic rats. The nerve Na+-K+-ATPase activity of diabetic rats, reduced by 40% compared with controls, was reversed to the level of controls in both experiments, whereas weight loss and hyperglycemia were unchanged, and neither nerve sorbitol accumulation nor myo-inositol depletion was corrected. In a morphometric analysis of myelinated nerve fibers (MNFs) in long-term diabetes, the mean diameter of the largest 10% of MNFs was significantly reduced in untreated diabetic compared with control rats, but OP-1206 completely reversed this reduction. The results suggest that OP-1206 ameliorates a decrease in nerve Na+-K+-ATPase activity without any effect on nerve myo-inositol level and that the compound may be not only a potent therapeutic agent for the treatment of diabetic neuropathy but also a useful research tool to investigate the mechanism of nerve Na+-K+-ATPase activity regulation.

This content is only available via PDF.