In-vitro and in-vivo anti-allergic effects of magnolol on allergic rhinitis via inhibition of ORAI1 and ANO1 channels

Hong Thi Lam Phan, Yu Ran Nam, Hyun Jong Kim, Joo Han Woo, Wan NamKung, Joo Hyun Nam, Woo Kyung Kim

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Ethnopharmacological relevance: Flos Magnoliae (the dried flower buds of Magnolia biondii Pamp, FM) is a known herbal traditional medicine used for the symptomatic relief of nasal congestion and rhinorrhea caused by rhinitis and sinusitis. Magnolol, a neolignan from the magnolia family, is a secondary metabolite known to have anti-allergic and anti-inflammatory effects. However, the underlying mechanisms and therapeutic effect of magnolol in the treatment of allergic rhinitis (AR) remain elusive. Aims of the study: Anoctamin 1 (ANO1), a calcium-activated anion channel, mediates mucus and electrolyte secretion in nasal airway epithelial cells, whereas calcium release-activated calcium channel protein 1 (ORAI1) participates in the activation of T-lymphocytes and mast cells. The aim of our study is to understand the mechanisms of action of magnolol against AR, i.e., whether it acts through the modulation of ANO1 and ORAI1 channels that are expressed in nasal epithelial cells and T-lymphocytes, respectively. Materials and methods: Whole-cell patch clamp was used to record the activity of ORAI1 and ANO1 ion channels in ORAI1 or ANO1 overexpressed HEK293T cells, while the Ussing chamber apparatus was used to measure electrolyte transport via the epithelium, in Calu-3 cells cultured in an air-liquid interface. Additionally, calcium imaging of Jurkat T-lymphocytes was used to assess changes in the intracellular calcium concentration. Magnolol toxicity was assessed using the CCK-8 assay, and its effect on T-lymphocyte proliferation was measured by labeling human primary T-lymphocytes with carboxyfluorescein succinimidyl ester. Finally, OVA-induced Balb/c mice were employed to evaluate the effect of magnolol on nasal symptoms, as well as cytokine and eosinophil infiltration in AR. Results: Magnolol inhibits ORAI1 and ANO1 channels in a concentration-dependent manner. Magnolol (30 μM) inhibits anti-CD3 induced cellular proliferation and production of IL-2 via ORAI1 channels in T-lymphocytes. Further, ATP-induced electrolyte transport mediated by ANO1 channels is significantly inhibited by magnolol in IL-4 sensitized Calu-3 cells. Notably, 300 μM magnolol significantly attenuates cytokine and eosinophil infiltration, thus alleviating AR symptoms in mice OVA-induced AR. Conclusion: Magnolol may be a promising therapeutic agent for the treatment and prevention of AR.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115061
JournalJournal of Ethnopharmacology
Publication statusPublished - 2022 May 10

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea funded by Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning of South Korea [grant number NRF-2018M3A9F3081729 ].

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier B.V.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery


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