Archives of Toxicology

, Volume 81, Issue 1, pp 45–55 | Cite as

Protection effect of piper betel leaf extract against carbon tetrachloride-induced liver fibrosis in rats

  • Shun-Chieh Young
  • Chau-Jong Wang
  • Jing-Jing Lin
  • Pei-Ling Peng
  • Jui-Ling Hsu
  • Fen-Pi ChouEmail author
Organ Toxicity and Mechanisms


Piper betel leaves (PBL) are used in Chinese folk medicine for the treatment of various disorders. PBL has the biological capabilities of detoxication, antioxidation, and antimutation. In this study, we evaluated the antihepatotoxic effect of PBL extract on the carbon tetrachloride (CCl4)-induced liver injury in a rat model. Fibrosis and hepatic damage, as reveled by histology and the activities of aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) were induced in rats by an administration of CCl4 (8%, 1 ml/kg body weight) thrice a week for 4 weeks. PBL extract significantly inhibited the elevated AST and ALT activities caused by CCl4 intoxication. It also attenuated total glutathione S-transferase (GST) activity and GST α isoform activity, and on the other hand, enhanced superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase (CAT) activities. The histological examination showed the PBL extract protected liver from the damage induced by CCl4 by decreasing α-smooth muscle actin (α-sma) expression, inducing active matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP2) expression though Ras/Erk pathway, and inhibiting TIMP2 level that consequently attenuated the fibrosis of liver. The data of this study support a chemopreventive potential of PBL against liver fibrosis.


Piper betel leaf Liver fibrosis Glutathione S-transferase α-smooth muscle actin Matrix metalloproteinase-2 



This work was supported by the grants from National Science Council (NSC94-2320-B-040-040) and Chung Shan Medical University (CSMC 92-OM-B-002), Taiwan.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shun-Chieh Young
    • 1
  • Chau-Jong Wang
    • 1
  • Jing-Jing Lin
    • 1
    • 2
  • Pei-Ling Peng
    • 1
  • Jui-Ling Hsu
    • 1
  • Fen-Pi Chou
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Institute of Biochemistry and BiotechnologyChung Shan Medical UniversityTaichungTaiwan
  2. 2.Academia Sinica Genomics Research CenterTaipeiTaiwan

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