NEUROCHEMISTRYCarnosol, a component of rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis L.) protects nigral dopaminergic neuronal cellsKim, Sung-Juna *; Kim, Jae-Sunga *; Cho, Hong-Sukb d; Lee, Hyo Jungb c; Kim, Sang Yongb c; Kim, Seungd; Lee, Sook-Youngb; Chun, Hong Sunga bAuthor Information aDepartment of Biotechnology bResearch Center for Proteineous Materials, Chosun University Departments of cBio-Materials dGenetic Science, Graduate School of Chosun University, Gwangju, Republic of Korea Correspondence and requests for reprints to Dr Hong Sung Chun, PhD, Department of Biotechnology, Chosun University, 375 Seosuk-dong, Gwangju 501-759, Republic of Korea Tel/fax: +82 62 230 6609; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Sponsorship: This study was supported by the SRC/ERC program of MOST/KOSEF (R11-2000-083-02006-0), BK21 program of MOE and the technology development program for Agriculture and Forestry, MAF/ARPC, Republic of Korea. Received 27 July 2006; accepted 28 July 2006 *These authors contributed equally to this study. NeuroReport: November 6th, 2006 - Volume 17 - Issue 16 - p 1729-1733 doi: 10.1097/01.wnr.0000239951.14954.10 Buy Metrics Abstract Carnosol, a major component of Rosmarinus officinalis, is a phenolic diterpene that has potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities. In this study, we investigated the protective effects of carnosol on rotenone-induced neurotoxicity in cultured dopaminergic cells. Results showed that cell viability was significantly improved with carnosol through downregulation of caspase-3. Furthermore, carnosol significantly increased the tyrosine hydroxylase, Nurr1, and extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2. These results suggest that carnosol may have potential as a possible compound for the development of new agents to treat Parkinson's disease. © 2006 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.