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Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine ›› 2010, Vol. 8 ›› Issue (1): 49-55.doi: 10.3736/jcim20100110

• Original Experimental Research • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Taohe Chengqi Tang ameliorates acute liver injury induced by carbon tetrachloride in rats

 Tung-yuan Laia,b, Yi-jiun Wengc, Wei-wen Kuod, Li-mien Chene, Yun-ting Chungf, Yueh-min Linh, Fuu-jen Tsaii,Chun-hsin Leej, Yee-mun Choonga, Eric Y. C Laik, Chih-yang Huangc,j,l, Yu-lan Yehg,j,l   

  1. a School of Post-Baccalaureate Chinese Medicine, College of Chinese Medicine,China Medical University, Taichung 404, Taiwan, China
    b Department of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung 404, Taiwan, China
    c Graduate Institute of Basic Medical Science, China Medical University, Taichung 404, Taiwan, China
    d Department of Biological Science and Technology, China Medical University, Taichung 404, Taiwan, China
    e Department of Internal Medicine, Armed Forces Taichung General Hospital, Taichung 411, Taiwan, China
    f Emergency Department, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung 404, Taiwan, China
    g Department of Pathology, Changhua Christian Hospital, Changhua 500, Taiwan, China
    h Department of Pediatrics, Medical Research and Medical Genetics, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung 404, Taiwan, China
    i Center for Cardiovascular Diseases of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Xiyuan Hospital, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences,Beijing 100091, China
    j Graduate Institute of Chinese Medical Science, China Medical University, Taichung 404, Taiwan, China
    k Hope-Sun Cancer Center, Taichung Hospital, Taichung 403, Taiwan, China
    l Department of Health and Nutrition Biotechnology, Asia University, Taichung 413, Taiwan, China
  • Received:2009-07-27 Accepted:2009-10-15 Online:2010-01-20 Published:2010-01-15
  • Contact: Yu-lan Yeh


To clarify the efficacy of Taohe Chengqi Tang (THCQT), a compound traditional Chinese herbal medicine, in protecting liver damage induced by carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) in rats.

Thirty male Wistar rats were divided into normal control group, untreated group, low-dose THCQT group (receiving 0.3 g/kg of THCQT), high-dose THCQT group (receiving 0.5 g/kg of THCQT), and positive control group (receiving silymarin 25 mg/kg). All testing substances were orally administered 1 hour before the intraperitoneal injection of CCl4 (1.5 mL/kg). Twenty-four hours after CCl4 injection, the rats were sacrificed to observe liver histopathological changes, and to evaluate activities of serum aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT), and lipid peroxidation (LPO) and glutathione (GSH) levels in liver tissues.

CCl4 injection elevated the serum AST and ALT activities, but THCQT significantly reversed this effect. The increase of hepatic LPO by CCl4 was markedly reduced by THCQT. Also, this herbal mixture increased hepatic GSH in the rats. In histopathology analysis, THCQT decreased the fatty accumulation, necrosis and lymphocyte infiltration. The in vitro study in rat brain showed that LPO induced by Fe 2+/ascorbic acid was dose-dependently reduced by THCQT. According to the biochemical and morphological data, THCQT could protect the liver from CCl4-induced injuries.

THCQT seems helpful for protection of liver damage induced by chemicals depending on its anti-oxidant-like function, and THCQT is more effective than silymarin.

Key words: Traditional Chinese medicine, Carbon tetrachloride, Anti-oxidants, Taohe Chengqi Tang, Rats

Figure 1

Inhibitory effect of THCQT on FeCl2-ascorbic acidinduced LPO in the homogenates of brain isolated from rats Values ($\bar{x}s$) were obtained from each group of 5 animals."

Figure 2

Effects of THCQT and silymarin on activities of serum AST and ALT and levels of LPO and GSH in isolated liver tissues of CCl4-injected rats Activities of serum AST (A) and ALT (B) and levels of LPO (C) and GSH (D) in liver tissues were measured 24 hours after CCl4 injection. THCQT or silymarin (25 mg/kg) was administered 1 hour before the injection. 1: Normal control group; 2: Untreated group; 3: 0.3 g/kg THCQT group; 4: 0.5 g/kg THCQT group; 5: Silymarin group. Values ($\bar{x}s$) were obtained from each group of 6 animals. **P<0.01, vs normal control group; △P<0.05, vs untreated group."

Figure 3

Microscopic evaluation of the isolated livers of normal control rat or CCl4-injected rats (HE staining, ×200) Microscopic evaluation of the effects of THCQT on CCl4-induced acute hepatotoxicity. (A) Normal control group; (B) Untreated group (CCl4 alone): Diffuse areas of necrosis, sinusoidal congestion, broad infiltration of lymphocytes and Kupffer cells around the central vein, fatty change, loss of cell boundaries and ballooning degeneration of liver damage are observed; (C) THCQT (0.5 g/kg) group; (D) Silymarin (25 g/kg) group."

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