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      Impact of Qi-invigorating traditional Chinese medicines on intestinal flora: A basis for rational choice of prebiotics

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          Abstract

          According to the theory of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), Qi (vital energy) is regarded as a driving force of biological activities in human body, including both nutrient substances and organ functions. Qi-invigorating TCMs are widely used to treat various symptoms and disorders, such as fatigue, obesity, immunosuppression, intestinal flora imbalance, and gastrointestinal diseases, in which Qi is considered to be reduced or depleted. Interestingly, abundant clinical evidences suggest that these disorders are associated with the alternation of intestinal flora, which directly affects disease status. Herein we review the interaction between gut microbiota and Qi-invigorating TCMs under healthy and disease conditions and discuss the mechanisms of action and applications of Qi-invigorating TCMs in enhancing health status through microbial alternation. A better understanding of the role of Qi-invigorating TCMs in modulating microbial composition and the association between intestinal microbiota and diseases would help reveal the clinical consequences of microbiota alteration and explore opportunities to harness this symbiotic relationship to improve public health.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          CJNM
          Chinese Journal of Natural Medicines
          Elsevier
          1875-5364
          20 April 2017
          : 15
          : 4
          : 241-254
          Affiliations
          1School of Pharmacy, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, China
          Author notes
          *Corresponding author: PENG Ying, E-mail: ypeng@ 123456sjtu.edu.cn

          These authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.

          Article
          S1875-5364(17)30041-9
          10.1016/S1875-5364(17)30041-9
          28527509
          Copyright © 2017 China Pharmaceutical University. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
          Funding
          Funded by: National Natural Science Foundation of China
          Award ID: 30973962
          Award ID: 81473318
          This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 30973962 and 81473318).
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