Journal of Biosciences

, Volume 41, Issue 4, pp 569–575 | Cite as

Triphala, a formulation of traditional Ayurvedic medicine, shows protective effect against X-radiation in HeLa cells

  • Yuki Takauji
  • Kensuke Miki
  • Juma Mita
  • Mohammad Nazir Hossain
  • Masatake Yamauchi
  • Mitomu Kioi
  • Dai Ayusawa
  • Michihiko FujiiEmail author
Brief communication


Ayurveda is a holistic medical system of traditional medicine, and Triphala is one of the most popular formulations in Ayurveda. Triphala is composed of three kinds of herb, Terminalia chebula, Terminalia bellirica, and Emblica officinalis. Since Triphala is shown to exhibit a protective activity against ionizing radiation in mice, we investigated its activity in HeLa cells. We found that Triphala showed the protective effects against X-radiation and bleomycin, both of which generate DNA strand breaks, in HeLa cells. Further, Triphala efficiently eliminated reactive oxygen species (ROS) in HeLa cells. Thus, the antioxidant activity of Triphala would likely play a role in its protective actions against X-radiation and bleomycin because both agents damage DNA through the generation of ROS. These observations suggested that the radioprotective activity of Triphala can be, at least partly, studied with the cells cultured in vitro. The simple bioassay system with human cultured cells would facilitate the understanding of the molecular basis for the beneficial effects of Triphala.


Ayurveda bleomycin reactive oxygen species Triphala X-radiation 



We thank Ms Shigeno for her help in the X-ray experiments. This work was supported in part by a grant-in-aid for Scientific Research from the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture of Japan.


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Copyright information

© Indian Academy of Sciences 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yuki Takauji
    • 1
    • 2
  • Kensuke Miki
    • 1
    • 2
  • Juma Mita
    • 1
  • Mohammad Nazir Hossain
    • 3
  • Masatake Yamauchi
    • 4
  • Mitomu Kioi
    • 5
  • Dai Ayusawa
    • 1
    • 2
  • Michihiko Fujii
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Graduate School of NanobioscienceYokohama City UniversityKanagawaJapan
  2. 2.Ichiban Life CorporationKanagawaJapan
  3. 3.Department of BiochemistryPrimeasia UniversityDhakaBangladesh
  4. 4.National Institute of Radiological SciencesChibaJapan
  5. 5.Yokohama City University Graduate School of MedicineKanagawaJapan

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