Citrus aurantium L. var. amara Engl. (CAVA) was traditionally used as a digestant or expectorant in China. Crude polyphenols (CAVAP-W) extracted from blossoms of CAVA were mainly composed of eriocitrin/neoeriocitrin, eriocitrin/neoeriocitrin, rhoifolin, hesperidin, naringin, rutin, veronicastroside, neohesperidin, and hesperetin by LC-MS analysis. CAVAP-W showed significant anticomplement and anti-inflammatory effects. Due to the close relationship between anticomplement and anti-inflammatory activity, the anti-inflammatory effect was further investigated and the results showed that CAVAP-W significantly suppressed production of interleukin-6 (IL-6), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), interleukin-1beta (IL-1β), and mRNA expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), IL-6, TNF-α, IL-1β, and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) in lipopolysaccharides-stimulated RAW264.7 cells. Furthermore, CAVAP-W inhibited mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) phosphorylation and NF-κB activation through suppressing nuclear translocation of nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) P65, degradation and phosphorylation of IκBα, phosphorylation of IκKα/ß, c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), and P38, and activation of COX-2, thereby exerting the anti-inflammatory effects.
Keywords: Citrus aurantium L. var. amara Engl.; LC-MS; anti-complement; anti-inflammatory; polyphenolys.