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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Suppressive effects of milk-derived lactoferrin on psychological stress in adult rats.

Lactoferrin ( LF) is known as an iron-binding glycoprotein. It has been shown that bovine LF (bLF) is transported into cerebrospinal fluid via blood although its physiological effects in the central nervous system (CNS) are still unclear. In this study, a suppressive effect of bLF on psychological distress was investigated in adult rats. Intraperitoneal injection of bLF (100 mg/kg) reduced stressful behaviors in a conditioned fear-induced freezing test and an elevated plus-maze test. Interestingly, the suppressive effect of bLF was enhanced by pretreatment with electric foot-shock (FS). This suppressive effect of bLF in the elevated plus-maze test was reversed by pretreatment with naloxone, an opioid receptor antagonist, at a dose of 1 mg/kg (ip). N(omega)-nitro-l-arginine methyl ester (l-NAME), a nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor, also blocked the suppressive effect of bLF and foot-shock. In addition, combined application of a low dose of bLF (30 mg/kg, ip) and l-arginine (30 and 100 mg/kg, ip) showed significant potentiated effects on psychological stress. These results suggest that bLF has suppressive effects on psychological distress, especially under the condition of moderate stress. Furthermore, it is suggested that bLF possibly activates an endogenous opioidergic system via nitric oxide synthase activation.[1]


  1. Suppressive effects of milk-derived lactoferrin on psychological stress in adult rats. Kamemori, N., Takeuchi, T., Hayashida, K., Harada, E. Brain Res. (2004) [Pubmed]
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