Cineole inhibits the biosynthesis of leukotrienes and prostaglandins to alleviate allergic rhinitis: Insights from metabolomics

J Pharm Biomed Anal. 2023 Sep 20:234:115574. doi: 10.1016/j.jpba.2023.115574. Epub 2023 Jul 12.


Allergic rhinitis (AR) is a common allergic disease characterized by nasal congestion, rhinorrhoea, and sneezing. Cineole, a monoterpenoid compound widely present in various volatile oils, has a wide range of pharmacological activities and is of interest in allergic airway diseases for its anti-inflammatory and anti-mucus production abilities. However, the protective effects of cineole in mice with allergic rhinitis and its mechanisms have not been well investigated. In this study, the protective effect of cineole against ovalbumin-induced (OVA-induced) allergic rhinitis and its molecular mechanism is investigated by metabolomic analysis based on ultra-high performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS). OVA combined with aluminum hydroxide adjuvant is used to sensitize and establish the allergic rhinitis (AR) mouse model. The mice are randomly divided into groups of control, AR, cineole (30 mg/kg), and budesonide (38.83 μg/kg). The pharmacodynamic results show that cineole significantly reduces the levels of Th2-type cytokines and OVA-specific IgE (OVA-sIgE) in AR mice, improves nasal mucosal tissue damage and alleviates nasal symptoms compared to the untreated AR group. Metabolomic results show that arachidonic acid (AA) metabolism and tryptophan (Trp) metabolism are reprogrammed on the basis of 27 significantly altered metabolites. Further studies show that cineole inhibits the biosynthesis of pro-inflammatory lipid mediators leukotrienes (LTs) and prostaglandins (PGs) in mice by inhibiting the activity of 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) in the arachidonic acid metabolic (AA metabolic) pathway. It also inhibits the production of Th2 cytokines and inflammatory cell infiltration, thereby alleviating symptoms such as nasal congestion and nasal leakage. These results reveal the action and molecular mechanism of cineole in alleviating AR and provide a theoretical basis for the clinical application of cineole in treating AR.

Keywords: Allergic rhinitis; Arachidonic acid metabolism; Cineole; Metabolomics.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arachidonic Acid
  • Chromatography, Liquid
  • Cytokines
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Eucalyptol / therapeutic use
  • Immunoglobulin E
  • Leukotrienes / adverse effects
  • Metabolomics
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Ovalbumin
  • Prostaglandins* / adverse effects
  • Rhinitis, Allergic* / chemically induced
  • Rhinitis, Allergic* / drug therapy
  • Tandem Mass Spectrometry


  • Eucalyptol
  • Prostaglandins
  • Arachidonic Acid
  • Immunoglobulin E
  • Cytokines
  • Leukotrienes
  • Ovalbumin