Effects of Korean red ginseng (Panax ginseng), urushiol (Rhus vernicifera stokes), and probiotics (Lactobacillus rhamnosus R0011 and Lactobacillus acidophilus R0052) on the gut-liver axis of alcoholic liver disease

Chang Seok Bang, So Hyung Hong, Ki Tae Suk, Jin Bong Kim, Sang Hak Han, Hotaik Sung, Eun Ji Kim, Myoung Jo Kim, Moon Young Kim, Soon Koo Baik, Dong Joon Kim

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Background: Roles of immune reaction and toll-like receptor-4 (TLR-4) have widely been established in the pathogenesis of alcoholic liver disease (ALD). Methods: We evaluated the biologic efficacy of Korean Red Ginseng (KRG), urushiol, and probiotics (Lactobacillus rhamnosus R0011 and Lactobacillus acidophilus R0052) in mouse models of ALD. Sixty C57BL/6 mice were equally divided into six feeding groups for 10 weeks: normal diet, alcohol, control, alcohol + KRG, alcohol + urushiol, and alcohol + probiotics. Alcohol was administered via a LiebereDeCarli liquid diet containing 10% alcohol. TLR-4 expression, proinflammatory cytokines, and histology, as well as the results of liver function tests were evaluated and compared. Results: No between-group differences were observed with regard to liver function. TLR-4 levels were significantly lower in the KRG, urushiol, and probiotics groups than in the alcohol group (0.37 ± 0.06 ng/mL, 0.39 ± 0.12 ng/mL, and 0.33 ± 0.07 ng/mL, respectively, vs. 0.88 ± 0.31 ng/mL; p < 0.05). Interleukin- 1β levels in liver tissues were decreased among the probiotics and KRG groups. The tumor necrosis factor-α level of liver tissue was decreased in the KRG group. Conclusion: The pathological findings showed that alcohol-induced steatosis was significantly reduced by KRG and urushiol. As these agents improve immunologic capacity, they may be considered in potential anti-ALD treatments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-172
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Ginseng Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2014


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology (miscellaneous)
  • Complementary and alternative medicine

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