Aim of the study: Gynostemma pentaphyllum is a popular folk medicine that has been used for treatment of hepatitis in Asia. Our previous study demonstrates that Gynostemma pentaphyllum n-butanol extract inhibits the onset and improves the recovery of CCl(4)-induced liver fibrogenesis in rats and inhibits PDGF-induced rat hepatic stellate cells (HSCs) proliferation. In this study, the effect of Gynostemma pentaphyllum extract on cytokines and type I procollagen expression was analyzed.
Materials and methods: Rat HSCs were treated with PDGF, Gynostemma pentaphyllum n-butanol extract, RP-18-Gyp fraction, rapamycin or vehicle. Rat cytokine antibody array chip or ELISA kit was used for cytokines detection. Intracellular protein expression was detected by Western blotting, mRNA expression was analyzed by RT-PCR.
Results: RP-18-Gyp fraction is the more purified gypenosides fraction from Gynostemma pentaphyllum n-butanol extract. In cell proliferation, the inhibitory effect of 200 microg/ml RP-18-Gyp fraction is similar to 500 microg/ml Gynostemma pentaphyllum n-butanol extract. Furthermore, both of them have the ability of decreasing monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) mRNA expression and protein release and inhibiting type I procollagen protein expression.
Conclusions: Both of Gynostemma pentaphyllum n-butanol extract and its more purified RP-18-Gyp fraction have the biological activities in the inhibition of cell proliferation, MCP-1 release and type I procollagen expression in rat HSCs. These data could provide the evidence to support for the traditional use of Gynostemma pentaphyllum in hepatitis.