The purpose of this study is to develop a new method of preparing salvianolic acid extracts (SAE) water-in-oil-in-water (W/O/W) multiple emulsion (ME). SAE injection is used in the treatment of brain infarct and promotion of blood circulation in China. However, the injection is not convenient, and the oral preparation has poor bioavailability. Hence, a new preparation that is convenient and stable with good biological availability is required. SAE ME was prepared by two-step emulsification method. Combined with single-factor investigation and orthogonal test, the embedding rate and centrifugal retention rate were taken as the comprehensive indexes to optimize the formulation of SAE ME. The ME size was tested by laser particle size analyzer. The pharmacokinetic studies were conducted in SD rats with HPLC-MS/MS method. The blood coagulation and hemorheology tests were conducted to assess the effect of preparation in rats. The best preparation technique for SAE ME is by the use of trospium chloride; SAE represent 12% of water in the phase, lipophilic emulsifier HLB value=4.3, lipophilic emulsifier is 20% of the oil phase. The median diameter of particle is (0.608±0.05) μm and the Cmax of ME is 3-fold higher compared to Cmax of free drug. The oral biavailability of ME is 26.71-fold higher than that of free drug with good effect on blood circulation. SAE ME is stable hence, improves the biological availability and slows down drug release.
Scopoletin was recently shown to stimulate melanogenesis through cAMP-response element-binding protein (CREB) phosphorylation. In this study, we investigated the molecular events of melanogenesis-induced by scopoletin. After exposure to scopoletin, the protein levels of tyrosinase and tyrosianse related protein-1 (TRP-1) were significantly increased in B16F10 cells. The mRNA levels of tyrosinase and microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF) were also enhanced by scopoletin. cAMP production and phosphorylation of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) were increased by scopoletin treatment. Scopoletin-mediated increase of intracellular melanin and tyrosinase expression were significantly attenuated by PKA inhibitors (H-89 and KT5720), while a PKC inhibitor (Ro-32-0432) had no effect and a p38 MAPK inhibitor (SB203580) partially blocked the scopoletin-induced intracellular melanin and tyrosinase expression. Moreover, scopoletin synergistically with cell-permeable cAMP analog (dibutyryl cAMP) significantly induced tyrosinase activity and melanin content in B16F10 cells. The silencing of p38 MAPK by siRNA decreased the scopoletin-induced tyrosinase expression in B16F10 cells. These results suggest that scopoletin could induce melanin synthesis through the cAMP/PKA pathway and partially p38 MAPK activation in B16F10 cells.
Quisqualis indica (QI) has been used for treating disorders such as stomach pain, constipation, and digestion problem. This study was aimed to evaluate the therapeutic efficacy of QI extract on treating benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) in LNCaP human prostate cancer cell line and a testosterone-induced BPH rat model. LNCaP cells were treated with QI plus testosterone propionate (TP), and androgen receptor (AR) and prostate specific antigen (PSA) expression levels were assessed by Western blotting. To induce BPH, the rats were subjected to a daily subcutaneous injection of TP (3 mg/kg) for 4 wk. The rats in treatment group were orally gavaged with QI (150mg/kg) together with the TP injection. In-vitro studies showed that TP-induced increases in AR and PSA expression in LNCaP cells were reduced by QI treatment. In BPH-model rats, the prostate weight, testosterone in serum, DHT concentration and 5α-reductase mRNA expression in prostate tissue were significantly reduced following the treatment with QI. TP-induced prostatic hyperplasia and the expression of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) and cyclin D1 were significantly attenuated in QI-treated rats. In addition, QI induced apoptosis by up-regulating caspase-3 and -9 activity and decreasing the B-cell lymphoma 2 (Bcl-2)/Bcl-2-associated X protein (Bax) ratio in prostate tissues of BPH rats. Further investigation showed that TP-induced activation of AKT and glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK3β) was reduced by QI administration. Therefore, our findings suggest that QI attenuates the BPH state in rats through anti-proliferative and pro-apoptotic activities and might be useful in the clinical treatment of BPH.
Although some new drugs have been developed, Tripterygium wilfordii Hook F.（TWHF）has the merits of relatively lower price and fewer side effects. Unfortunately, the efficacy and safety of the TWHF (especially dosage 120mg/day) in the IgA nephropathy（IgAN） are still lacking. A cohort study including 49 IgAN patients with heavy proteinuria who received induction therapy was undertaken. Patients were divided into three groups: Prednisone (PRE), conventional-dose TWHF (CTW) and double-dose TWHF (DTW). The clinical features, laboratory data, histological manifestations and outcomes of the groups were compared. We found that urinary protein excretion and rates of elevated n-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase (NAG) and retinol binding protein (RBP) were prominent in all groups. Neither histopathological changes nor the rates of renal insufficiency were significantly different among groups. Patients in the PRE (69.2%) and DTW groups (87.5%) achieved complete remission; none of the CTW group did. Furthermore, the total remission rate of the DTW group was substantially higher than that of the CTW group. The degree of hypoproteinemia, improved considerably in the PRE and DTW groups. Treatment was well tolerated in all patients, and no serious adverse events were observed. Our findings suggested that induction therapy with double dose TWHF significantly improved response rates in IgAN patients with heavy proteinuria, and did not considerably increase side effects.
Cisplatin is an anticancer agent and induces DNA interstrand cross-links (ICLs). ICLs activate various signaling processes and induce DNA repair pathways, including the Fanconi anemia (FA) pathway. FA complementation group D2 (FANCD2) is monoubiquitinated in response to DNA damage, leading to activation of the DNA double-strand-break repair protein, RAD51. Caffeine increases the anticancer activity of cisplatin by inhibiting DNA repair; however, details of the mechanism remain unclear. We investigated the mechanism responsible for the synergistic anticancer effect of cisplatin and caffeine in HepG2 human hepatocellular carcinoma cells, focusing on the FA pathway. Caffeine (≥100 µg/mL) significantly enhanced the antiproliferative activity induced by 3.8 µg/mL cisplatin. Caffeine (200 µg/mL) promoted apoptosis and inhibited the increase in the proportion of viable cells in S phase that occurred in the presence of 3.8 µg/mL cisplatin. Both FANCD2 monoubiquitination and RAD51 expression were significantly inhibited by co-treatment with 200 µg/mL caffeine and 3.8 µg/mL cisplatin compared with cisplatin alone. In conclusion, caffeine enhances the anticancer effect of cisplatin by inhibiting FANCD2 monoubiquitination. In HepG2 cells, caffeine might inhibit the FA pathway and thereby regulate DNA damage responses such as DNA repair and apoptosis.
Dibutyl phthalate (DBP) is a plasticizer used for many consumer products including cosmetics. Potential health concerns regarding DBP include reproductive and developmental toxicity, endocrine disruption and neurotoxicity. DBP is a high priority chemical as to reduction of exposure of children to it. Through reproductive toxicity studies, monobutyl phthalate (MBP) has been proposed to be the active metabolite derived from DBP. We previously demonstrated that DBP activates transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 (TRPA1) cation channels expressed on sensory neurons. We have also shown that DBP enhanced skin sensitization in a fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC)-induced contact hypersensitivity (CHS) mouse model. Through MBP formation by esterase in the skin, it is possible that MBP exerts a major effect on the biological activity we observed. To test this possibility, we directly compared DBP and MBP. A more than 40-fold higher concentration of MBP as compared with DBP was required for activation of TRPA1 in vitro. Unlike DBP, MBP did not enhance skin sensitization to FITC. These results demonstrated that DBP directly, i.e., not through its metabolite MBP, activates TRPA1 and enhances FITC-CHS. It is noteworthy that butyl benzoate, a related compound, activated TRPA1 and enhanced FITC-CHS.
A complication of diabetes mellitus is the over-production of vascular superoxides, which contribute to the development of arteriosclerosis and peripheral arterial disease (PAD). Hyperglycemia induces the formation and accumulation of advanced glycation end-products (AGEs), which in turn stimulate vascular superoxide production. The mechanism underlying AGE-mediated vascular superoxide production remains to be clarified in lower limb complications associated with diabetes. In the present study, we investigated the role of AGEs and the mitochondrial respiratory complex in superoxide production in femoral arteries using the type 2 diabetes model Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) rats [vs. non-diabetic Long-Evans Tokushima Otsuka (LETO) rats]. The effects of in vivo administration of pravastatin on superoxide production in femoral arteries were also examined. Using chemiluminescent assays, luminescence microscopy, and competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), we determined that vascular superoxide production and serum glyceraldehyde-derived AGEs (Glycer-AGEs) increased in OLETF rats. Pravastatin inhibited these responses without changing serum total cholesterol concentrations. The mitochondrial complex II inhibitor thenoyltrifluoroacetone (TTFA) also inhibited vascular superoxide production. Application of Glycer-AGEs in situ increased superoxide production in the vascular wall of femoral arteries from pravastatin-treated OLETF rats, which was then inhibited by TTFA. These results suggest that hyperglycemia increases serum Glycer-AGEs, which subsequently induce superoxide production in the femoral artery of OLETF rats in a mitochondrial complex II-dependent manner. Collectively, our results have partially elucidated the pathological mechanisms leading to diabetes-related PAD, and indicate dual beneficial actions of pravastatin for the prevention of oxidative damage to the vascular wall.
α-Cyperone, a sesquiterpene compound represents 25.23% of the total oil and is the most abundant compound in C. rotundus oil. Endothelial cell protein C receptor (EPCR) is a main member in Protein C (PC) anti-coagulation system. EPCR could be shed from cell surface, and is mediated by Tumor necrosis factor-α converting enzyme (TACE). Nothing that EPCR is a marker of vascular barrier integrity in vascular inflammatory disease and takes part in systemic inflammatory disease. In this study, we investigated whether α-cyperone could inhibit EPCR shedding. To observe the effect, we investigated this issue by detection the effect of α-cyperone onPhorbol-12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA)-induced EPCR shedding in HUVECs. The cells were pretreated with α-cyperone for 12 h, and then stimulated by PMA for 1 h. The solute EPCR (sEPCR) and expression of membrane EPCR (mEPCR) were measured by ELISA and western blot. The mRNA, protein level and activity of TACE were tested by qRT-PCR, western blot and InnoZyme TACE activity assay kit. Furthermore, we measured the protein level of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) signaling and protein kinase C (PKC) pathway under this condition by western blot. The results showed that α-cyperone could suppress PMA-induced EPCR shedding through inhibiting the expression and activity of TACE. In addition, α-cyperone could inhibit PKC translocation, but not have an effect on phosphorylation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), p38 and extracellular regulated protein kinases (ERK) 1/2. Given these results, α-cyperone inhibits PMA-induced EPCR shedding through PKC pathway, which will provide an experimental basis for further research on α-cyperone.
Kakkonto (KK), a traditional Japanese Kampo formulation for cold and flu, is generally sold as an over-the-counter (OTC) pharmaceuticals used for self-medication. Kampo formulations should be used according to the Sho-symptoms of Kampo medicine. These symptoms refer to the subjective symptoms themselves. Although with OTC pharmaceuticals, this is often not the case. We surveyed the relationship of agreement of Sho with the benefit feeling rate (BFR) of patients who took KK (n = 555), cold remedies with KK (CK, n = 315), and general cold remedies (GC, n = 539) using internet research. BFR of a faster recovery was greater in participants who took the medication early and who had confidence in their physical strength in all treatment groups. BFR was significantly higher in the GC group than in the KK group for patients with headache, runny nose, blocked nose, sneezing, and cough. BFR was also significantly higher in the GC group than in the CK group for headache (males) and cough (females). BFR was the highest in the KK group for stiff shoulders. All cold remedies were more effective when taken early, and the larger the number of Sho that a patient had, the greater the BFR increased. Therefore, a cold remedy is expected to be most effective when there are many cold symptoms and when it is taken at an early stage of the common cold.
Plant lectin, a class of highly diverse non-immune origin and carbohydrate-binding proteins, has been reported to specially induce cancer cell through programmed cell death (PCD) pathways (apoptosis and/or autophagy), shedding lights on screening promising anti-cancer candidate agent for further therapeutic trials. However, the complicated molecular mechanisms by which plant lectins induced the programmed death of tumor cells, have not yet been fully clarified. Here, we summarized a novel model, based on vast amount of research, by which plant lectins eliminate various types of cancer cells via three major pathways, including a) direct ribosome inactivating, b) endocytosis-dependent mitochondrial dysfunction and c) sugar-containing receptors binding. A better understanding of the role of plant lectins played and further elucidation of the strategies targeting PCD would provide a new clue for the applications and modifications of plant lectin as a potential anti-cancer agent from bench to clinic.
Curcumae Longae Rhizoma (Curcuma Longa L.) is an important traditional Chinese medicine with multiple beneficial effects. To elucidate the genetic and chemical differences among Curcumae Longae Rhizoma samples, three DNA barcoding markers (rbcL, matK, and ITS-LSU D1/D3) and HPLC fingerprinting were employed in this study. The discriminatory power of rbcL and matK was low, as they only detected one sequence type that showed 100% similarity with more than 20 congeneric species in the BOLD database. In contrast, ITS-LSU D1/D3 showed sufficient discriminatory power to precisely identify all of the market samples as C. longa L. in a BLAST search as well as differentiate each sample based on 2–10 ITS-LSU D1/D3 haplotypes with intragenomic variability (mean p-distance: 0.7%, range: 0–2.6%; mean number of differences: 9.6 sites, range: 0–38 sites). HPLC fingerprinting of 13 commercial samples showed a similarity that ranged from 0.769 to 0.996, indicating that the sample quality varied. A cluster analysis based on 5 common peak areas from the HPLC chromatogram resulted in two groups. Group I included 9 samples with a relatively high chemical content, and group II contained 4 samples with a low chemical content. A Mantel test revealed a low correlation (r = 0.1721, p = 0.047) between genetic and chemical differences. Our findings suggest that the integrated approach of ITS-LSU D1/D3 DNA barcoding and HPLC fingerprinting provides a comprehensive, precise, and convenient method to clarify the genetic and chemical differences in Curcumae Longae Rhizoma.
Morphine is widely used for relieving cancer pain in patients with advanced cancer. However, whether morphine can suppress or promote the progression of cancer in breast cancer patients receiving morphine analgesia remains unclear. Therefore, we used an in vitro model treated with morphine and naloxone to investigate the effects of morphine on breast cancer cell line MCF-7. MCF-7 cells were cultured with different concentrations (0.01 to 10 µM) of morphine at 12th, 24th, 36th, 48th, 60th and 72th hours. Then, cell viability was measured through the MTT assay, and cell cycle and apoptosis assays were detected by flow cytometry (FCM). In addition, cell proliferation was conducted by colony formation assay. In this study, we have found that morphine (0.01 to 10 µM) could significantly reduce the cell vitality, growth and colony formation rate of MCF-7 cells, which has a certain relationship with cell cycle progression arrested at the G0/G1 and G2/M phase and MCF-7 cells apoptosis. Moreover, naloxone along with morphine could not reverse these effects, which indicates that the inhibition of MCF-7 breast cancer cell growth and proliferation by morphine could be its independent effect, not associated with opioid receptors. Morphine can inhibit cell growth by blocking the cell cycle and promote apoptosis in MCF-7 cells. Hence, morphine may be unable to promote the progression of cancer in breast cancer patients receiving morphine analgesia.
This article has been retracted by the Editorial Committee of The Pharmaceutical Society of Japan because it contains scientific misconduct. Although the data published in this article were generated in part by the first author, the authors violated authorship and sponsorship protocol.
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