Treatment with the herbal medicine, naoxintong improves the protective effect of high-density lipoproteins on endothelial function in patients with type 2 diabetes

Mol Med Rep. 2016 Mar;13(3):2007-16. doi: 10.3892/mmr.2016.4792. Epub 2016 Jan 18.


The protective effect of high‑density lipoprotein (HDL) on endothelial function is impaired in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), which may result in atherosclerotic complications. Naoxintong (NXT) is a compound preparation that includes Radix Astragali, Angelicae sinensis, Radix Paeoniae Rubra and Ligusticum wallichii. It is widely administered in China to prevent atherosclerotic complications. In the present study, NXT was administered to 69 patients with T2DM. HDLs were isolated from patient blood samples prior to and following the intervention. In vitro endothelial functions of HDL, including proliferation, migration, angiogenesis, and anti‑apoptosis were investigated by bromodeoxyuridine, wound healing, Transwell and Matrigel tube formation assays on human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). The results from the present study demonstrated that HUVECs treated with HDL isolated from diabetic patients following NXT therapy exhibited increased proliferative effects (10‑27%; P<0.05), and improved migration ability (15‑35%; P<0.05), anti‑apoptotic function (23‑34%; P<0.05) and angiogenesis (30‑54%; P<0.001). Furthermore, the phosphorylation levels of Akt (26‑36%; P<0.01) and extracellular signal‑regulated kinase (16‑80%; P<0.01) were increased following NXT therapy. The present in vitro study demonstrates that the protective effect of HDL on endothelial function is markedly impaired in diabetic patients who tend to develop atherosclerosis, and the impaired function may be partly abrogated by NXT.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Apoptosis / drug effects
  • Cell Movement / drug effects
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / drug therapy*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / pathology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / physiopathology*
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / pharmacology
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / therapeutic use*
  • Endothelial Cells / drug effects
  • Endothelial Cells / metabolism
  • Endothelial Cells / pathology*
  • Enzyme Activation / drug effects
  • Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases / metabolism
  • Female
  • Herbal Medicine
  • Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells / drug effects
  • Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Lipoproteins, HDL / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neovascularization, Physiologic / drug effects
  • Phosphorylation / drug effects
  • Phytotherapy
  • Protective Agents / metabolism*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt / metabolism


  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal
  • Lipoproteins, HDL
  • Protective Agents
  • naoxintong
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt
  • Extracellular Signal-Regulated MAP Kinases