In order to clarify the correlation between "oketsu" syndrome and autonomic nervous activity, subjects were evaluated with laser Doppler flowmetry and spectral analyses of R-R intervals (RRs) and systolic blood pressure (SBP). According to the diagnostic criteria of "oketsu", the "oketsu" score (OS) was evaluated. In a sectional study, the results showed that a significant decrease in skin blood flow (SBF) was observed in proportion to the severity of the "oketsu" state, and the low-frequency component of SBP (SBP-LF) in the "oketsu" state was significantly larger than that in the non-"oketsu" state. In a diachronic study, the changes in OS and the parameters between week 0 and 12 weeks later were investigated, with the quantity of each change being calculated as Δ-. Δ-SBF showed a significant negative correlation with Δ-OS, and Δ-RR-L/H, Δ-SBP-LF and Δ-SBP-L/H revealed significant positive correlations with D-OS. It is known that SBF changes with sympathetic nervous activity, and SBP-LF and SBP-L/H reflect a-sympathetic nervous activity. These results suggest that α-sympathetic nervous activity increased in the "oketsu" state, and this significant relationship was maintained even after change in the "oketsu" state.
Keishi-bukuryo-gan is a Chinese traditional medicine, which is used clinically as a vascular system disorder-eliminating drug. This review summarizes the effects of Keishi-bukuryo-gan on the occurrence and progression of diabetic nephropathy. To prove its usefulness, we employed two kinds of experimental model animals; diabetic nephropathy rats induced by subtotal nephrectomy plus streptozotocin injection and spontaneously diabetic WBN/Kob rats. In both animal models, Keishi-bukuryo-gan treatment suppressed increase of urinary protein excretion, which is a prognostically important clinical manifestation for renal functional deterioration in diabetic patients, and preserved renal morphological changes peculiar to diabetic glomerulosclerosis. On the other hand, disorders of the metabolic pathway mediated by persistent hyperglycemia (the glycation reaction, excessive polyol pathway and oxidative stress) were observed. However, oral administration of Keishi-bukuryo-gan normalized the accumulation of advanced glycation endproducts (AGEs), determined by measuring fluorescence, and lipid peroxidation levels in the kidney. Furthermore, by a comparison with aminoguanidine (an AGEs inhibitor), butylated hydroxytoluene (an antioxidant) and captopril (an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor), we confirmed that Keishi-bukuryo-gan prevents diabetic kidney damage from developing and has inhibitory effects against AGEs accumulation and oxidative stress. From these results, we proposed the potential usefulness of Keishi-bukuryo-gan in the treatment of diabetic nephropathy.
Standard Western medicine has had only limited success in the prevention of periodontal disease and in the treatment of a variety of oral diseases. In vitro studies indicate that many Asian botanical formulae, including their individual herbal compounds and chemical constituents, exhibit antibacterial and antifungal properties, which may significantly delay the development of plaque, calculus, and caries. While anticariogenic and anticalculus activities for some of these substances have been demonstrated in animal models; however, results from human clinical trials have been inconclusive. Some therapeutic approaches based on traditional Asian medicine have been reported to result in the successful treatment of such oral complaints as xerostomia (dry mouth), oral lichen planus, and glossodynia. However, at present many of the relevant studies are only available in the Chinese or Japanese language. With respect to those that have been published in English, many are difficult to interpret due to weak study designs. Nevertheless, the existing data are encouraging, and warrant further studies on traditional Asian medicine and their application to oral health.
Extracts of a herbal plant, Curcuma sp. (Zingiberaceae), were investigated for their anticancer activities. The rhizome of this plant is used in Thai folk medicine to treat cancers and to promote wound healing. In the present study, we performed preliminary bioassays to assess the anti-invasive and anti-angiogenic activities of the methanol (MeOH) and ethyl acetate (EtOAc) extracts. We found that both extracts produced moderate cytotoxic effects against murine hepatocellular carcinoma CBO140C12 cells. Interestingly, the EtOAc extract exhibited remarkable inhibitory effects on the invasion and migration of tumor cells in vitro, and on the adhesion of tumor cells to various extracellular matrix proteins. Moreover, the EtOAc extract also inhibited the formation of tube-like structures by hepatic sinusoidal endothelial (HSE) cells cultured on Matrigel-coated substrate, suggesting its anti-angiogenic activity. Altogether, our preliminary results indicate that the EtOAc extract contains active constituents that could potentially be developed into anticancer agents.
In the treatment for the symptoms of Parkinson's disease, the catechol-O-methyl transferase (COMT) inhibitors are expected to mitigate side effects, such as wearing-off, which are caused by long-term administration of L-DOPA. It has been reported that Senkyu-chacho-san causes dopamine increase in a rat striatum. However, the detailed mechanism has not been clarified about the mechanism. Search for components inhibiting COMT led to the discovery of active compounds contained in Cnidii Rhizoma (Senkyu). The hot water extract from the Cnidii Rhizoma was subjected to distribution or gel filtration chromatography to give ferulic acid (1), sinapic acid (2), 5-hydroxy-ferulic acid (3), and chlorogenic acid (4). Their structures were determined by spectroscopic analyses, particularly by extensive 1D and 2D NMR studies. Isolation of 3 is the first report from Cnidii Rhizoma. These compounds can be regarded as substrate-mimetics, and the number of the hydroxyl group in benzene nucleus seems to have a significant effect on inhibitory activity against COMT. Compound 3 inhibited COMT in a competitive manner and its Ki value was calculated 43 μM from Lineweaber-Burk plots. These results suggest that the phenylpropanoides, which are the components of Cnidii Rhizoma, might raise the dopamine level in the brain.
The antidiabetic activity of Fuscoporia oblique (Fuscoporia Murr.) was investigated in KK-Ay mice, an animal model of genetically type 2 diabetes with hyperinsulinemia. The water extract of Fuscoporia oblique (FO) (100 mg/kg body weight) improved hyperglycemia after an oral administration of fructose or maltose in KK-Ay mice. FO reduced the blood glucose of KK-Ay mice 4 hours after a single oral administration when compared with the control. FO reduced the blood glucose of KK-Ay mice 6 weeks after repeated administration, and also significantly decreased the plasma insulin of KK-Ay mice under similar conditions. However, FO did not affect the blood glucose in normal mice. FO tended to decrease the blood glucose in an insulin tolerance test. These results suggest that the antidiabetic activity of FO is derived, at least in part, from a decrease in plasma insulin, due to the decrease of insulin resistance.
The inhibitory effects of 78 herbal extracts on cytochrome P450 3A4 (CYP3A4) and P450 2D6 (CYP2D6) activity were investigated using human liver microsomes. The incubation mixture contained a methanol soluble fraction prepared from the powder of each herbal water extract (equivalent to 1.65 mg of extract powder per mL). Thirty-one herbal extracts inhibited over 50% of human liver microsomal erythromycin N-demethylation, a marker reaction of CYP3A4 activity. Among the 31 herbal extracts, 8 of them (Angelica Dahurica Root, Cassia Bark, Clove, Incised Notopterygium Rhizome, Moutan Bark, Rhubarb, Sappan Wood, Schisandra Fruit) inhibited N-demethylation by over 90%. Among the herbal extracts examined, the strongest inhibition of CYP3A4 was noted with Sappan Wood, which had an IC50 value of 43 mg/mL. Rhubarb, Schisandra Fruit, Incised Notopterygium Rhizome, and Angelica Dahurica Root had IC50 values of 77, 127, 144, and 185 μg/mL, respectively. Further, 28 of the herbal extracts inhibited over 50% of human liver microsomal dextromethorphan O-demethylation, which is a marker of CYP2D6 activity. Among the 28 herbal extracts, 13 (Cassia Bark, Clove, Coptis Rhizome, Ephedra Herb, Gambir Plant, Incised Notopterygium Rhizome, Magnolia Bark, Moutan Bark, Phellodendron Bark, Rhubarb, Sappan Wood, Sinomenium Stem, Zanthoxylum Fruit) inhibited O-demethylation by over 90%. The strongest inhibition of CYP2D6 was noted with Phellodendron Bark, which had an IC50 value of 4 μg/mL. Coptis Rhizome, Sinomenium Stem, Sappan Wood, and Rhubarb showed IC50 values of 14, 40, 52, and 64 μg/mL, respectively. These results indicate that many herbal extracts have an inhibitory effect on CYP3A4 and CYP2D6.