Rikkunshito and Ghrelin

  • Hiroshi TakedaEmail author
  • Shunsuke Ohnishi
  • Koji Nakagawa
  • Naoto Okubo
  • Chihiro Yamada
  • Chiharu Sadakane
  • Yayoi Saegusa
  • Miwa Nahata
  • Tomohisa Hattori
Part of the Methods in Pharmacology and Toxicology book series (MIPT)


Rikkunshito is a kampo herbal medicine which is widely used in Japan for the treatment of the upper gastrointestinal symptoms of patients with functional dyspepsia (FD), gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), dyspeptic symptoms of postgastrointestinal surgery patients, and chemotherapy-induced dyspepsia in cancer patients. Recently, very unique characteristics of rikkunshito have been unveiled; oral administration of rikkunshito potentiates orexigenic action of ghrelin through several different mechanisms. In addition, several lines of evidence obtained from both animal and human studies indicate that rikkunshito can be an attractive and promising therapeutic option for the anorectic conditions including cisplatin-induced dyspepsia, anorexia of aging, stress-induced hypophagia, cancer cachexia-anorexia syndrome, and drug-related anorexia. We will highlight what is known about the orexigenic effect of rikkunshito with a special focus on an interaction with ghrelin signaling system.

Key words

Rikkunshito Ghrelin GHSR1a Serotonin 2B-receptor Serotonin 2C-receptor Phosphodiesterase 3 Anorexia 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hiroshi Takeda
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Shunsuke Ohnishi
    • 2
  • Koji Nakagawa
    • 1
  • Naoto Okubo
    • 1
  • Chihiro Yamada
    • 3
  • Chiharu Sadakane
    • 3
  • Yayoi Saegusa
    • 3
  • Miwa Nahata
    • 3
  • Tomohisa Hattori
    • 3
  1. 1.Pathophysiology and TherapeuticsHokkaido University Faculty of Pharmaceutical SciencesSapporoJapan
  2. 2.Gastroenterology and HepatologyHokkaido University Graduate School of MedicineHokkaidoJapan
  3. 3.Tsumura Research Laboratories, Tsumura & Co.IbarakiJapan

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