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Antibacterial and Anti-inflammatory Activity of Traditional Chinese Herb Pairs, Angelica sinensis and Sophora flavescens

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The purpose of the present study was to investigate the antibacterial and anti-inflammatory activity of Angelica sinensis extract (AE), Sophora flavescens extract (SE), and herb pair A. sinensis and S. flavescens extract (HPE). Endotoxin-induced uveitis (EIU) was induced in rats by a footpad injection of lipopolysaccharide. The anti-inflammatory potential of AE, SE, and HPE in the regulation of nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB), maleic dialdehyde (MDA), polymorphonuclear cells (PMN), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), adhesion molecule (ICAM-1), and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) was determined by ELISA and immunohistochemistry. HPE showed strong antibacterial activity at all tested concentrations (1.25, 2.5, and 5 μg/ml) to Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, and Shigella Castellani and Chalmers. HPE significantly inhibited EIU-induced upregulation of NF-κB activation and the production of IL-1β, TNF-α, iNOS, ICAM-1, and COX-2. Moreover, HPE suppressed MDA and infiltration of PMN. The study supports the hypothesis that the anti-pimple and anti-eczema activities of Dangguikushen compound recipe are attributed to herb pairs, A. sinensis and S. flavescens, used in combination.

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This project was supported by the Project of Shandong Province Higher Educational Science and Technology Program (J08LH62), NNSF grant (30800301, 31170992), and the Knowledge Innovation Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (KSCX2-YW-R-254, KSCX2-EW-Q-18, and KSCX2-EW-J-8). This project was also supported by the Natural Science Foundation of Shandong Province (Y2007C078) and Major State Basic Research Development Program of China (973 Program, 2007CB512601).

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Correspondence to Jianyou Guo.

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Han, C., Guo, J. Antibacterial and Anti-inflammatory Activity of Traditional Chinese Herb Pairs, Angelica sinensis and Sophora flavescens . Inflammation 35, 913–919 (2012).

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