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J Pharm Pharmacol. 2006 Dec;58(12):1591-9.

Effects of the Chinese prescription Kangen-karyu and its crude drug Tanjin on ageing process in rats.

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  • 1Institute of Natural Medicine, University of Toyama, 2630 Sugitani, Toyama 930-0194, Japan.


The effects of the Chinese prescription Kangen-karyu and its crude drug Tanjin on the ageing process were investigated in rats. Diets supplemented with Kangen-karyu and Tanjin extracts decreased glycosylated protein levels in serum, a risk marker of ageing and ageing-related diseases. In addition, they inhibited the levels of thiobarbituric acid reactive substance in the serum and liver; Kangen-karyu in particular led to a strong decrease in hepatic mitochondrial thiobarbituric acid reactive substance. The decline in the reduced glutathione/oxidized glutathione ratio in the liver observed with ageing was ameliorated by Kangen-karyu and Tanjin, while these groups attenuated the increase in glutathione peroxidase activity of hepatic tissue against ageing. This suggests that Kangen-karyu and Tanjin regulate the glutathione redox cycle that maintains the cellular redox condition against age-related oxidative stress. Moreover, the overexpression of cytoplasmic cytochrome c observed with ageing was attenuated by Kangen-karyu and Tanjin. This provides new evidence that Kangen-karyu and Tanjin inhibit leakage of superoxide in mitochondria and attenuate cellular oxidative damage. Furthermore, Kangen-karyu and Tanjin would maintain mitochondrial function with ageing through the regulation of related protein expression such as bax and bcl-2 proteins. In addition, Kangen-karyu reduced the expression of nuclear factor kappa B; Kangen-karyu and Tanjin did not affect the expression of inhibitor kappa B. The present study demonstrated that Kangenkaryu prevented oxidative damage and mitochondrial dysfunction with ageing. Furthermore, Kangen-karyu showed a stronger protective effect against ageing by oxidative stress than Tanjin, probably through synergistic and/or additive effects.

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