The aim of this paper was to study the prescription compatibility connotation in the treatment of primary dysmenorrhea(PD) and verify the mechanism as predicted by network pharmacology of Siwu Decoction(SWD). Mice PD model was constructed by using estradiol benzoate-oxytocin. PD mice were randomly divided into 8 groups, namely normal group, model group, positive group, complete formula group, Rehmanniae Radix Praeparata-free group, Paeoniae Radix Alba-free group, volatile oil-free group, Chuan-xiong Rhizoma and Angelicae Sinensis Radix-free group. Latent time, writhing times, inhibition rate, prostaglandin F_2_α(PGF_2_α) and prostaglandin E_2(PGE_2) levels in serum, endothelin-1, Ca~(2+), expression levels of prostaglandin synthase 2 G/H(PTGS2), estrogen receptor(ESR1), glucocorticoid receptor gene(NR3 C1) mRNA and protein expression levels in the uterus homogenate and pathological changes of uterine tissue were index to explore the prescription compatibility connotation and verify the mechanism of SWD in the treatment of PD. Compared with the extraction liquid of the whole recipe, the effect of Rehmanniae Radix Praeparata-free group and Paeoniae Radix Alba-free group with volatile oil were slightly lower, the effect of essential oil-free group was significantly lower, and the effect of Chuanxiong Rhizoma and Angelicae Sinensis Radix-free group was worse than that of the whole recipe. The relative expression levels of PTGS2 protein and mRNA were significantly reduced by the SWD. The relative expressions of protein and mRNA of ESR1, NR3 C1 were significantly increased. SWD treats PD by regulating the expression of key proteins PTGS2, ESR1 and NR3 C1.Its main medicinal herbs were Angelicae Sinensis Radix and Chuanxiong Rhizoma. Active components were mainly in volatile oil, but Paeo-niae Radix Alba and Rehmanniae Radix Praeparata also had some contributions.
Keywords: Siwu Decoction; action mechanism; key proteins; mRNA; primary dysmenorrhea.