Magnesium lithospermate B (MLB) is one of the major active components of Salvia miltiorrhizae. The anti-oxidative effects of Salvia miltiorrhizae have been previously reported. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of purified MLB on hepatic fibrosis in rats and on the fibrogenic responses in hepatic stellate cells (HSCs). Hepatic fibrosis was induced in rats by intraperitoneal thioacetamide (TAA) injections over a period of 8 or 12 weeks. MLB was orally administered daily by gavage tube. Serum AST and ALT levels in TAA + MLB group were significantly lower than those in TAA only group at week 8. Hepatic fibrosis was significantly attenuated in TAA + MLB group than in TAA only group at week 8 or 12. Activation of HSCs was also decreased in TAA + MLB group as compared to TAA only group. Hepatic mRNA expression of α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA), TGF-β1, and collagen α1(I) was significantly decreased in TAA + MLB group as compared to TAA only group. Incubation with HSCs and MLB (≥100 μM) for up to 48 h showed no cytotoxicity. MLB suppressed PDGF-induced HSC proliferation. MLB inhibited NF-κB transcriptional activation and monocyte chemotactic protein 1 (MCP-1) production in HSCs. MLB strongly suppressed H2O2-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation in HSCs, and MLB inhibited type I collagen secretion in HSCs. We concluded that MLB has potent antifibrotic effect in TAA-treated cirrhotic rats, and inhibits fibrogenic responses in HSCs. These data suggest that MLB has potential as a novel therapy for hepatic fibrosis.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Medicine
- Molecular Biology
- Clinical Biochemistry