Medicinal ginger is produced by various processes in Japan and China, e.g., ginger that has been soaked in hot water or steamed is called kankyo in Japan, and roasted ginger is called hokyo (paojiang in Chinese) in China. However, the heating method differs between the two countries, and the quality of processed ginger might be affected by differences in the heating period and strength. The color of ginger changes markedly during heating. Therefore, in this study, we analyzed the color value and pungent compound contents of our processed ginger samples and elucidated the differences in the quality of these samples. In addition, we investigated the relationship between the color values and pungent compound contents of processed ginger samples. As a result, we found that the a* value (indicating redness) of steamed (St) ginger was positively correlated with its 6-shogaol to 6-gingerol ratio ([S/G]), the a* value of ginger soaked in hot water (Soh) remained constant regardless of the [S/G], and the a* value of ginger heated at 180°C (H180) was correlated on a logarithmic curve with [S/G]. In addition, the b* values (indicating yellowness) of the Soh, St, and H180 ginger samples were negatively correlated with their 6-shogaol concentrations. Therefore, we confirmed that color values are suitable indices for evaluating the quality of processed ginger because they can be used to evaluate its [S/G] ratio and the processing method by this value.
The extract of Sasa kurilentis was found to strongly inhibit ascorbate/Fe2+-stimulated formation of thiobarbituric reactive substances, an indicator of lipid peroxidation, in isolated rat liver mitochondoria, and further to protect human embryonic lung (HEL) cells from H2O2-induced mitochondrial dysfunction in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, the Sasa extract effectively prevented the intracellular ROS production in HUVEC exposed to the high concentration (30 mM) of glucose and also greatly inhibited the adhesion of U937 leukemia cells to HUVEC exposed to oxidative stress. Thus, the antioxidative benefits of the Sasa extract observed in the present study may contribute to improve endothelial dysfunction related to hyperglycemia.
We aimed to assess the efficacy of saireito for chronic subdural hematoma (CSDH). Our second aim was to identify the association of aquaporin-4 (AQP4) expression in the CSDH outer membrane with the effect of saireito (Tsumura, Tokyo, Japan). The control group consisted of 58 cases, the saireito group 49. All patients were treated surgically. Saireito was administered postoperatively to the saireito group. The CSDH outer membranes of 20 cases in the saireito group were immunostained for AQP4. There were no CSDH recurrences of in the saireito group, but 6 recurrences in the control group (p=0.03). The period until postoperative hematoma disappearance was significantly shorter in the saireito than in the control group (p=0.047). Also, all CSDH outer membranes were AQP4 immuno-positive, and inflammatory cell invasion was especially marked in strongly AQP4 positive tissues. Saireito accelerated the disappearance of postoperative hematoma associated with CSDH and prevented CSDH recurrence. Furthermore, AQP4 was expressed on the CSDH outer membrane, suggesting that saireito may exert effects on CSDH by inhibiting AQP4 function.
Obesity has become a major public health problem worldwide. To date, many studies on obesity prevention have been performed. In this study, we examined the anti-obesity effects of Schisandra chinensis (Turcz.) Baill. fruit (SC) water extract in rats fed a high-fat diet. We gave the rats high-fat chow including SC water extract for 10 weeks. Although these rats ate the same amount of chow as the high-fat diet group, their weight gain was significantly inhibited compared to that in the high-fat diet group. Moreover, the SC group showed significantly decreased epididymal fat weight and levels of plasma triglycerides, total cholesterol, and leptin compared to the high-fat diet group. In the oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT), the SC group showed lower blood glucose levels than the high-fat diet group 90 min after eating. This is the first study to show that SC water extract has anti-obesity effects. It may be beneficial to drink SC water extract or tea after eating to prevent obesity.
Dietary supplementation with polyphenolic compounds is associated with reduced diet-induced obesity. The leaves of Forsythia suspensa Vahl (Oleaceae) contain large amounts of polyphenolic compounds, phillyrin and forsythiaside. The anti-obesity effect of Forsythia leaf extract (FLE) prepared from the leaves of F. suspensa was examined in rats fed a high-fat diet. Three groups of rats were fed with a high-fat diet, administered percentages consisted of 0 % (control), 2.5 % and 5.0 % FLE. Compared to the control group, body, perirenal white adipose tissue, epididymal white adipose tissue, brown adipose tissue and liver weights were all significantly reduced in the two FLE groups. On plasma parameters, triglyceride and free fatty acid levels were significantly lower in the two FLE administered groups. Furthermore, the gene expressions in the liver and adipose tissues were examined by real-time PCR to better understand the mechanism of the anti-obesity effect of FLE. Liver tissue gene expressions of Fatp, Cpt1a and ACADVL, related to the activation of β-oxidation, were significantly up-regulated in the two FLE groups compared to the control group. White and brown adipose tissue gene expressions of PPARγ, adiponectin and UCP1, related to lipid metabolism, were significantly up-regulated in the two FLE groups compared to the control group. It is suggested that the supplementation of FLE to a high-fat diet may be beneficial for preventing diet-induced obesity