Herbal mixture shown to alleviate inflammatory skin disorders

In this study, researchers from Kyungpook National University in South Korea evaluated the ability of a combination of five different plants to prevent atopic dermatitis (AD) in vivo and in vitro. The results of their study were published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

  • The researchers used Cornus officinalis (Japanese cornelian cherry), Rosa multiflora (multiflora rose), Lespedeza bicolor (shrubby bushclover), Platycladus orientalis (Chinese thuja), and Castanea crenata (Korean chestnut) – all traditionally used to alleviate inflammatory skin disorders – to make an herbal mixture (C2RLP) against AD.
  • They used murine, rat, and human cells to evaluate its effects in vitro.
  • For in vivo studies, they purchased five-week-old, specific-pathogen-free male BALB/C mice.
  • They measured nitric oxide (NO) and PGE2 (prostaglandin E2) production in vitro using a spectrophotometer and ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay), respectively.
  • They also evaluated the effect of C2RLP on iNOS (inducible nitric oxide synthase)-mRNA expression and TARC (thymus and activation-regulated chemokine) production, as well as the release of beta-hexosaminidase in vitro.
  • The researchers also tested C2RLP for antioxidant activity and used liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS) to identify the active compounds present in it.
  • For in vivo studies, they tested the toxicity of C2RLP on Sprague-Dawley rats; BALB/C mice were used for the rest of the experiment.
  • They induced lesions on the mice and treated them with an ointment made from C2RLP for 25 days; a histopathological examination was done to determine the degree of hyperplasia (tissue enlargement), inflammation and mast cell infiltration.
  • The levels of cytokines such as IL-2, IL-4, IL-5, IL-6, IL-13 and IFN-gamma were determined from blood samples. Cytokines are signaling molecules secreted by immune cells that promote inflammation.
  • C2RLP was able to reduce AD and suppress histopathological changes in the mice. It also reduced IL-4 levels in the blood, as well as the production of NO, PGE2, and TARC.
  • C2RLP, at high concentrations, also inhibited iNOS-mRNA expression in vitro and beta-hexosaminidase release. Furthermore, it exhibited antioxidant activity against the free radical DPPH.
  • LC-MS analysis revealed the presence of compounds like loganin (anti-inflammatory), ellagic acid (anti-cancer), and kaempferol 3 glucoside (anti-inflammatory) in C2RLP.

Based on their results, the researchers concluded that the herbal mixture C2RLP has the ability to protect against AD by down-regulating immune responses and suppressing inflammatory mediators.

Read the whole study at this link.

Journal Reference:

Mechesso AF, Lee SJ, Park NH, Kim JY, Im ZE, Suh J-W, Park S-C. PREVENTIVE EFFECTS OF A NOVEL HERBAL MIXTURE ON ATOPIC DERMATITIS-LIKE SKIN LESIONS IN BALB/C MICE. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 18 January 2019;19(1). DOI: 10.1186/s12906-018-2426-z

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