A novel anti-inflammatory role for ginkgolide B in asthma via inhibition of the ERK/MAPK signaling pathway

Molecules. 2011 Sep 6;16(9):7634-48. doi: 10.3390/molecules16097634.


Ginkgolide B is an anti-inflammatory extract of Ginkgo biloba and has been used therapeutically. It is a known inhibitor of platelet activating factor (PAF), which is important in the pathogenesis of asthma. Here, a non-infectious mouse model of asthma is used to evaluate the anti-inflammatory capacity of ginkgolide B (GKB) and characterize the interaction of GKB with the mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway. BALB/c mice that were sensitized and challenged to ovalbumin (OVA) were treated with GKB (40 mg/kg) one hour before they were challenged with OVA. Our study demonstrated that GKB may effectively inhibit the increase of T-helper 2 cytokines, such as interleukin (IL)-5 and IL-13 in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF). Furthermore, the eosinophil count in BALF significantly decreased after treatment of GKB when compared with the OVA-challenged group. Histological studies demonstrated that GKB substantially inhibited OVA-induced eosinophilia in lung tissue and mucus hyper-secretion by goblet cells in the airway. These results suggest that ginkgolide B may be useful for the treatment of asthma and its efficacy is related to suppression of extracellular regulating kinase/MAPK pathway.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / pharmacology*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use
  • Asthma / drug therapy*
  • Asthma / immunology
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / chemistry
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / cytology
  • Cell Count
  • Cytokines / metabolism
  • Eosinophils / pathology
  • Female
  • Ginkgolides / pharmacology*
  • Ginkgolides / therapeutic use
  • Goblet Cells / pathology
  • Hyperplasia
  • Immunoglobulin E / blood
  • Inflammation / drug therapy
  • Inflammation / metabolism
  • Interleukin-13 / metabolism
  • Interleukin-5 / metabolism
  • Lactones / pharmacology*
  • Lactones / therapeutic use
  • Lung / metabolism
  • Lung / pathology
  • MAP Kinase Signaling System / drug effects*
  • Macrophages / pathology
  • Mice
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases / metabolism
  • Neutrophils / pathology
  • Ovalbumin


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Cytokines
  • Ginkgolides
  • Interleukin-13
  • Interleukin-5
  • Lactones
  • Immunoglobulin E
  • Ovalbumin
  • ginkgolide B
  • Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases