Inhibitory effects of wasabi isothiocyanates on chemical mediator release in RBL-2H3 rat basophilic leukemia cells

J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo). 2012;58(4):303-7. doi: 10.3177/jnsv.58.303.


Wasabi is a plant of Japanese origin. It belongs to the family Brassicaceae and produces various isothiocyanates (ITCs). To clarify the type I allergies inhibited by wasabi ITCs, we investigated the inhibitory effect on chemical mediator release from dinitrophenylated bovine serum albumin (DNP-BSA)-stimulated RBL-2H3 rat basophilic leukemia cells. Allyl ITC (AITC), sec-butyl ITC (s-BuITC), and 3-butenyl ITC (3-BuITC), which have 3 or 4 carbon chains, inhibited histamine release but did not inhibit the release of leukotriene B4 (LTB4) or cysteinyl LTs (CysLTs). 4-Pentenyl ITC (4-PeITC) and 5-hexenyl ITC (5-HeITC), which have 5 or 6 carbon chains and an unsaturated bond at the end, inhibited LTB4 release but did not inhibit the release of histamine or CysLTs. 6-Methylthiohexyl ITC (6-MTITC), 6-methylsulfinylhexyl ITC (6-MSITC), and 6-methylsulfonylhexyl ITC (6-MSFITC), which have a sulfur atom inserted at the end of a 6-carbon chain, inhibited the release of histamine, LTB4, and CysLTs and the elevation in intracellular Ca(2+). These results suggest that wasabi ITCs inhibited type I allergies by inhibiting chemical mediator release and that the inhibitory effects on each chemical mediator were due to differences in the side chain structure of the wasabi ITCs.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cattle
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Dinitrophenols / metabolism
  • Histamine Release / drug effects
  • Isothiocyanates / pharmacology*
  • Leukemia, Basophilic, Acute / pathology
  • Leukotriene B4 / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Leukotriene B4 / metabolism
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Rats
  • Serum Albumin, Bovine / metabolism
  • Wasabia / chemistry*


  • 6-methylsulfinylhexyl isothiocyanate
  • Dinitrophenols
  • Isothiocyanates
  • Plant Extracts
  • dinitrophenyl-bovine serum albumin
  • Leukotriene B4
  • Serum Albumin, Bovine
  • 2,3,4-tri-O-acetylarabinopyranosyl isothiocyanate
  • 6-methylthiohexyl isothiocyanate