Effects of Guanfu Total Base on Bcl-2 and Bax Expression and Correlation With Atrial Fibrillation

Hellenic J Cardiol. Sep-Oct 2018;59(5):274-278. doi: 10.1016/j.hjc.2018.02.009. Epub 2018 Mar 6.


Objective: This study sought to investigate the effects of Guanfu total base on Bcl-2 and Bax expression and the correlation of Bcl-2 and Bax expression with atrial fibrillation.

Methods: Twenty-four male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into control, model, and treatment groups (n = 8 each). A combined intravenous injection of CaCl2 (10 mg/mL) and acetylcholine (Ach; 66 μg/mL) was administered to the model and treatment groups for 7 consecutive days to induce atrial fibrillation. After 3 days, the treatment group was administered orally with Aconitum coreanum. Controls received saline for 7 consecutive days. Atrial fibrillation duration was monitored by using an electrocardiogram. Immunohistochemical analysis was used to measure the expression and distribution of Bcl-2 and Bax in the atrial myocardial tissues, RT-PCR was used to measure the Bcl-2 and Bax mRNA expression, and western blot was used to measure Bcl-2 and Bax expression in the atrial myocardial tissue.

Results: The model group showed prolonged atrial fibrillation, but this was absent in the control and treatment groups, indicating that treatment with A. coreanum effectively reduced atrial fibrillation duration. Immunohistochemical analysis showed that Bcl-2 expression in the atrial muscle tissue was significantly lower, but Bax expression was significantly higher in the model group compared to that in the control group. After treatment, Bcl-2 expression increased and Bax expression decreased (P < 0.01) in the treatment group compared to those in the model group. RT-PCR and western blot presented the same trends.

Conclusion: Bcl-2 and Bax expression was correlated with atrial fibrillation. Guanfu total base was effective in treating atrial fibrillation, upregulating Bcl-2 expression, and downregulating Bax expression.

Keywords: Aconitum coreanum; Atrial fibrillation; Bax; Bcl-2.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcholine / administration & dosage
  • Administration, Intravenous
  • Administration, Oral
  • Animals
  • Atrial Fibrillation / chemically induced
  • Atrial Fibrillation / metabolism*
  • Atrial Fibrillation / physiopathology
  • Calcium Chloride / administration & dosage
  • Electrocardiography
  • Heart Atria / metabolism
  • Heterocyclic Compounds, 4 or More Rings / administration & dosage
  • Heterocyclic Compounds, 4 or More Rings / adverse effects*
  • Male
  • Myocardium / metabolism
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • bcl-2-Associated X Protein / drug effects*


  • Bax protein, rat
  • Guanfu base R
  • Heterocyclic Compounds, 4 or More Rings
  • RNA, Messenger
  • bcl-2-Associated X Protein
  • Calcium Chloride
  • Acetylcholine