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      Protective effects of extracts of Schisandra chinensis stems against acetaminophen-induced hepatotoxicity via regulation of MAPK and caspase-3 signaling pathways

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          The present study was designed to evaluate protective activity of an ethanol extract of the stems of Schisandra chinensis (SCE) and explore its possible molecular mechanisms on acetaminophen (APAP) induced hepatotoxicity in a mouse model. The results of HPLC analysis showed that the main components of SCE included schisandrol A, schisandrol B, deoxyschisandrin, schisandrin B, and schisandrin C and their contents were 5.83, 7.11, 2.13, 4.86, 0.42 mg·g −1, respectively. SCE extract was given for 7 consecutive days before a single hepatotoxic dose of APAP (250 mg·kg −1) was injected to mice. Our results showed that SCE pretreatment ameliorated liver dysfunction and oxidative stress, which was evidenced by significant decreases in aspartate transaminase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), malondialdehyde (MDA) contents and elevations in reduced glutathione (GSH) and superoxide dismutase (SOD) levels. These findings were associated with the result that the SCE pretreatment significantly decreased expression levels of 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE) and 3-nitrotyrosine (3-NT). SCE also significantly decreased the expression levels of Bax, mitogen- activated protein kinase (MAPK), and cleaved caspase-3 by APAP exposure. Furthermore, supplementation with SCE suppressed the expression levels of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), suggesting alleviation of inflammatory response. In summary, these findings from the present study clearly demonstrated that SCE exerted significant alleviation in APAP-induced oxidative stress, inflammation and apoptosis mainly via regulating MAPK and caspase-3 signaling pathways.

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          Author and article information

          Chinese Journal of Natural Medicines
          20 September 2018
          : 16
          : 9
          : 700-713
          1College of Chinese Medicinal Materials, Jilin Agricultural University, Changchun 130118, China
          2Institute of Special Wild Economic Animals and Plant, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS), Changchun 132109, China
          Author notes
          *Corresponding authors: WANG Zi, Tel/Fax: 86-431-84533358, E-mails: wangzi8020@ ; LI Wei, Tel/Fax: 86-431-84533304, liwei7727@

          These authors have no conflict of interest to declare.

          Copyright © 2018 China Pharmaceutical University. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
          Funded by: Jilin Science & Technology Development Plan
          Award ID: 20160209008YY
          Funded by: Program for the Young Top-notch and Innovative Talents of Jilin Agricultural University
          Award ID: 2016-2018
          This work was supported by the grants of Scientific Research Foundation for the Returned Overseas Chinese Scholars (Jilin Province, 2015), Jilin Science & Technology Development Plan (No. 20160209008YY), and the Program for the Young Top-notch and Innovative Talents of Jilin Agricultural University (2016-2018).


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