Correlation between synergistic action of Radix Angelica dahurica extracts on analgesic effects of Corydalis alkaloid and plasma concentration of dl-THP

J Ethnopharmacol. 2010 May 4;129(1):115-20. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2010.03.005. Epub 2010 Mar 20.


Aim of study: Yuanhu Zhitong prescription that consists of Corydalis yanhusuo and Radix Angelicae dahuricae has been used for the treatment of gastralgia, costalgia, headache and dysmenorrhea in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Our previous studies demonstrated that Corydalis alkaloid (CA, derived from the root of Corydalis yanhusu) had potent analgesic properties, and the total coumarins of Angelica dahurica (Cou) and volatile oil (VO) that derived from the root of Radix Angelicae dahuricae all could increase the analgesic effect of CA. The major objective of this paper was to investigate the mechanism that leading the analgesia of CA increased by Cou and (or) VO.

Materials and methods: The relationship between analgesic effect of CA and the plasma concentration of Dl-tetrahydropalmatine (dl-THP, active component of CA) was assayed in mice writhing test. The CA (34, 68 and 134 mg/kg) reduced the nociception by acetic acid intraperitoneal injection in a dose-dependent manner, and there was a significant linear relationship between the analgesic effect of CA and the plasma concentration of dl-THP. Then the plasma concentration of dl-THP at different time intervals in rats after oral administration of CA, CA-Cou, CA-VO and CA-Cou-VO were examined by using HPLC.

Results and conclusion: The results indicated that Cou and (or) VO raised the plasma concentration of dl-THP prominently. In conclusion, the reason that Radix Angelica dahurica extracts reinforced the analgesic effects of Corydalis alkaloid was related to the improvement of the plasma concentration of dl-THP.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acetic Acid
  • Alkaloids / pharmacology
  • Alkaloids / therapeutic use*
  • Analgesics / pharmacology
  • Analgesics / therapeutic use*
  • Angelica / chemistry*
  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal / drug effects
  • Berberine Alkaloids / blood*
  • Corydalis / chemistry*
  • Drug Synergism
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / chemistry
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / pharmacology
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Pain / blood
  • Pain / chemically induced
  • Pain / drug therapy*
  • Plant Roots
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley


  • Alkaloids
  • Analgesics
  • Berberine Alkaloids
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal
  • yuanhu zhitong
  • tetrahydropalmatine
  • Acetic Acid