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      Screening of Vietnamese medicinal plants for NF-κB signaling inhibitors: Assessing the activity of flavonoids from the stem bark of Oroxylum indicum

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          Ethnopharmacological relevance

          Seventeen plants used in Vietnamese traditional medicine for the treatment of inflammatory disorders were screened for NF-κB inhibitory activity. Oroxylum indicum, which exhibited activity, was investigated in detail.

          Materials and methods

          Forty plant extracts from 17 species were prepared by maceration using dichloromethane and methanol and were tested (10 µg/mL) to evaluate their ability to inhibit NF-κB activation using TNF-α-stimulated HEK-293 cells stably transfected with a NF-κB-driven luciferase reporter. The active extract of Oroxylum indicum was subsequently fractionated by different chromatographic techniques. After isolation, all single compounds were identified by spectroscopic methods and assessed for NF-κB inhibitory effects.


          The dichloromethane extracts obtained from Chromolaena odorata leaves and the stem bark of Oroxylum indicum showed distinct inhibitory effects on NF-κB activation at a concentration of 10 µg/mL. The active extract of Oroxylum indicum was subjected to further phytochemical studies resulting in identification of four flavonoid aglyca and six flavonoid glycosides. Pharmacological evaluation of the obtained compounds identified oroxylin A as the most active substance (IC 50=3.9 µM, 95% CI: 3.5–4.4 µM), while chrysin and hispidulin showed lower activity with IC 50=7.2 µM (95% CI: 6.0–8.8 µM) and 9.0 µM (95% CI: 7.9–10.2 µM), respectively. Interestingly, in this study the activity of baicalein (IC 50=28.1 µM, 95% CI: 24.6–32.0 µM) was weak. The isolated glycosides showed no inhibitory activity when tested at a concentration of 30 µM. Quantification of the four active flavonoids in extracts and plant materials suggested that oroxylin A contributes to the NF-κB inhibitory activity of the stem barks of Oroxylum indicum to a greater extent than baicalein which was thought to be responsible for the anti-inflammatory activity of this plant.


          The screening presented in this study identified the dichloromethane extracts of Chromolaena odorata and Oroxylum indicum as promising sources for NF-κB inhibitors. Hispidulin, baicalein, chrysin and oroxylin A, isolated from Oroxylum indicum, were identified as inhibitors of NF- κB activation.

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          Most cited references 36

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          Pathways connecting inflammation and cancer.

          Chronic and persistent inflammation contributes to cancer development and can predispose to carcinogenesis. Infection-driven inflammations are involved in the pathogenesis of approximately 15-20% of human tumors. However, even tumors that are not epidemiologically linked to pathogens are characterized by the presence of an inflammatory component in their microenvironment. Hallmarks of cancer-associated inflammation include the presence of infiltrating leukocytes, cytokines, chemokines, growth factors, lipid messengers, and matrix-degrading enzymes. Schematically, two interrelated pathways link inflammation and cancer: (1) genetic events leading to neoplastic transformation promote the construction of an inflammatory milieu; (2) tumor-infiltrating leukocytes, in particular macrophages, are prime regulators of cancer inflammation. Thus, an intrinsic pathway of inflammation (driven in tumor cells), as well as an extrinsic pathway (in tumor-infiltrating leukocytes) have been described and both contribute to tumor progression.
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            Oroxylin A inhibition of lipopolysaccharide-induced iNOS and COX-2 gene expression via suppression of nuclear factor-kappaB activation.

            Polyphenols are major components of many traditional herbal remedies, which exhibit several beneficial effects including anti-inflammation. The exact mechanism of the anti-inflammatory action of polyphenols, however, has not been determined. In the present study, we examined the effects of eight different polyphenols isolated from Chinese herbs, including two flavonoids (myricitrin and oroxylin A), four ellagitannins (penta-O-galloyl-beta-glucopyranose, woodfordin C, oenothein B, and cuphiin D1), and two anthraquinones (emodin and physcion), on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced nitric oxide (NO) production, and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) gene expression in RAW264.7 macrophages. The results indicated that only oroxylin A and emodin concentration-dependently inhibited LPS-induced NO production. The remaining compounds slightly inhibited LPS-induced NO production only at the highest concentration examined. Furthermore, oroxylin A inhibited the expression of LPS-induced iNOS and COX-2 proteins and mRNAs without an appreciable cytotoxic effect on RAW264.7 cells. Emodin also inhibited LPS-induced iNOS protein as potently as oroxylin A, but it inhibited LPS-induced iNOS mRNA expression only slightly and did not affect COX-2 mRNA and proteins. This was consistent with the findings that oroxylin A but not emodin or physcion inhibited prostaglandin E(2) synthesis induced by LPS. The inhibitory effects of oroxylin A on LPS-induced iNOS and COX-2 gene expression were also demonstrated in Bcl-2-overexpressing RAW264.7 macrophages, suggesting that oroxylin A inhibition of iNOS and COX-2 expression was not due to its antioxidant effect. Furthermore, oroxylin A but not emodin blocked nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-kappaB) binding and transcriptional activation associated with decreased p65 proteins in the nucleus induced by LPS. These results indicated that oroxylin A, an active component in Huang Qin, inhibited LPS-induced iNOS and COX-2 gene expression by blocking NF-kappaB activation, whereas emodin inhibition of LPS-induced iNOS expression may be mediated by a different transcription factor.
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              Fullerenol cytotoxicity in kidney cells is associated with cytoskeleton disruption, autophagic vacuole accumulation, and mitochondrial dysfunction.

              Water soluble fullerenes, such as the hydroxylated fullerene, fullerenol (C₆₀OHx), are currently under development for diagnostic and therapeutic biomedical applications in the field of nanotechnology. These molecules have been shown to undergo urinary clearance, yet there is limited data available on their renal biocompatibility. Here we examine the biological responses of renal proximal tubule cells (LLC-PK1) exposed to fullerenol. Fullerenol was found to be cytotoxic in the millimolar range, with viability assessed by the sulforhodamine B and trypan blue assays. Fullerenol-induced cell death was associated with cytoskeleton disruption and autophagic vacuole accumulation. Interaction with the autophagy pathway was evaluated in vitro by Lysotracker Red dye uptake, LC3-II marker expression and TEM. Fullerenol treatment also resulted in coincident loss of cellular mitochondrial membrane potential and ATP depletion, as measured by the Mitotracker Red dye and the luciferin-luciferase assays, respectively. Fullerenol-induced ATP depletion and loss of mitochondrial potential were partially ameliorated by co-treatment with the autophagy inhibitor, 3-methyladenine. In vitro fullerenol treatment did not result in appreciable oxidative stress, as measured by lipid peroxide and glutathione content. Based on these data, it is hypothesized that cytoskeleton disruption may be an initiating event in fullerenol cytotoxicity, leading to subsequent autophagy dysfunction and loss of mitochondrial capacity. As nanoparticle-induced cytoskeleton disruption, autophagic vacuole accumulation and mitochondrial dysfunction are commonly reported in the literature, the proposed mechanism may be relevant for a variety of nanomaterials. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

                Author and article information

                J Ethnopharmacol
                J Ethnopharmacol
                Journal of Ethnopharmacology
                Elsevier Sequoia
                15 January 2015
                15 January 2015
                : 159
                : 36-42
                [a ]Institute of Pharmacy/Pharmacognosy, Center for Molecular Biosciences Innsbruck, University of Innsbruck, Innrain 80/82, Innsbruck 6020, Austria
                [b ]Department of Pharmacognosy, University of Vienna, Althanstrasse 14, Vienna 1090, Austria
                [c ]Department of Pharmacognosy, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Medicine and Pharmacy of Ho Chi Minh City, 41 DinhTienHoang Street, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author. Tel.: +43 51250758409; fax: +43 51250758499. stefan.schwaiger@ 123456uibk.ac.at
                © 2014 The Authors

                This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/).

                Research Paper

                Pharmacology & Pharmaceutical medicine

                nf-κb, oroxylum indicum, hispidulin, baicalein, chrysin, oroxylin a


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