NEUROCHEMISTRYAxon- or dendrite-predominant outgrowth induced by constituents from AshwagandhaKuboyama, Tomoharu; Tohda, Chihiro; Zhao, Jing1; Nakamura, Norio1; Hattori, Masao1; Komatsu, KatsukoCAAuthor Information Research Center for Ethnomedicines 1Department of Metabolic Engineering, Institute of Natural Medicine, Toyama Medical and Pharmaceutical University, 2630 Sugitani, Toyama 930-0194, Japan CACorresponding Author: [email protected] Received 20 June 2002; accepted 10 July 2002 NeuroReport: October 7th, 2002 - Volume 13 - Issue 14 - p 1715-1720 Buy SDC Abstract We previously reported that the methanol extract of Ashwagandha (roots of Withania somnifera Dunal) induced dendrite extension in a human neuroblastoma cell line. In this study, we found that six of the 18 compounds isolated from the methanol extract enhanced neurite outgrowth in human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells. Double immunostaining was performed in rat cortical neurons using antibodies to phosphorylated NF-H as an axonal marker, and to MAP2 as a dendritic marker. In withanolide A-treated cells, the length of NF-H-positive processes was significantly increased compared with vehicle-treated cells, whereas, the length of MAP2-positive processes was increased by withanosides IV and VI. These results suggest that axons are predominantly extended by withanolide A, and dendrites by withanosides IV and VI. © 2002 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.