Aim of the study: Cissus quadrangularis (family: Vitaceae) has been widely used in traditional herbal medicine for the treatment of hemorrhoids, gastric ulcers and bone healing. In the present study, we determined the anti-inflammatory activity and the molecular mechanism of the ethyl acetate extract of Cissus quadrangularis stem (CQE) in LPS-stimulated RAW 264.7 macrophage cells.
Materials and methods: The inhibitory effect of CQE on LPS-induced nitric oxide (NO) production was evaluated in conditioned media. Cell viability was monitored by MTT assay. Protein and mRNA expressions were determined by RT-PCR and Western blotting analysis, respectively.
Results: CQE potently inhibited lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced nitric oxide (NO) production in RAW 264.7 macrophage cells in a dose-dependent manner. The mRNA and protein expressions of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) were suppressed also by CQE as was p65 NF-κB nuclear translocation. Further study demonstrated that CQE by itself induced heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) gene expression at the protein and mRNA levels in dose- and time-dependent manner. In addition, the inhibitory effects of CQE on NO production were abrogated by a HO-1 inhibitor, zinc protoporphyrin IX (ZnPP).
Conclusions: Collectively, these results suggest that CQE exerts an anti-inflammatory effect in macrophages, at least in part, through the induction of HO-1 expression. These findings provide the scientific rationale for anti-inflammatory therapeutic use of Cissus quadrangularis stem.
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