Ethnopharmacological relevance: Mu Xiang (Aucklandiae Radix) and Chuan Mu Xiang (Vladimiriae Radix) were used to treat gastrointestinal, liver and gallbladder diseases at practice. In most conditions, Chuan Mu Xiang was used to be a substitute of Mu Xiang or a local habit may attribute to the same main active ingredients Costunolide and Dehydrocostus lactone, which presented many similar pharmacological activities. However, other different lactone compounds in Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang also play a role in disease treatment, so the difference in therapeutic effects of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang in related diseases needs to be further studied.
Aims of the study: Revealing the differences between the chemical compounds of the total lactone extracts of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang (TLE of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang) and the differences in the protective effects of cholestatic liver injury to ensure rational use of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang.
Study design and methods: The macroporous adsorption resin was used to purify and enrich the lactone compounds to obtain the total lactone extracts of Mu Xiang and VR. HPLC-PDA was used to obtain the data to establish chemical fingerprint and chemometric analysis to compare similarities and differences between TLE of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang. The pharmacodynamic experiment revealed how TLE of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang to show protect effects on cholestatic liver injury.
Results: Similarity analysis results showed TLE of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang had a high similarity (>0.9). Nevertheless, difference analysis results showed 4 compounds, Costunolide, Dehydrocostus lactone, 3β-acetoxy-11β-guaia-4 (15), 10 (14)-diene-12,6α-olide and vladinol F may contribute to the differences between them. The pharmacodynamics experiments results showed the TLE of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang affected the different liver cholate-associated transporters mRNA expression (TLE of Mu Xiang up-regulated CYP7A1, TLE of Chuan Mu Xiang down-regulated FXR and BSEP), the TLE of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang had an effect to regulate biochemical indicators (AST, ALT, ALP, TBA) of liver function, and TLE of Chuan Mu Xiang was better than TLE of Mu Xiang in reducing the expression of inflammatory factors (IL-6 and IL-1β).
Conclusion: The liver protection of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang have been confirmed, but the differences of material basis and mechanism of drug efficacy needed further study to guarantee formulation research and provide theoretical references for clinical rational applications of Mu Xiang and Chuan Mu Xiang.