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Mol Cell Biochem. 2000 May;208(1-2):151-5.

Schisandrin B protects against menadione-induced hepatotoxicity by enhancing DT-diaphorase activity.

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Department of Biochemistry, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Hong Kong, P.R. China.


Pretreating mice with schisandrin B (Sch B), a dibenzocyclooctadiene derivative isolated from the fruit of Schisandra chinensis, at a daily dose of 1 mmol/kg for 3 days protected against menadione-induced hepatic oxidative damage in mice, as evidenced by decreases in plasma alanine aminotransferase activity (78%) and hepatic malondialdehyde level (70%), when compared with the menadione intoxicated control. In order to define the biochemical mechanism involved in the hepatoprotection afforded by Sch B pretreatment, we examined the activity of DT-diaphorase (DTD) in hepatocytes isolated from Sch B pretreated rats. Hepatocytes isolated from Sch B pretreated (a daily dose of 1 mmol/kg for 3 days) rats showed a significant increase (25%) in DTD activity. The increase in DTD activity was associated with the enhanced rate of menadione elimination in the hepatocyte culture. The ensemble of results suggests that the ability of Sch B pretreatment to enhance hepatocellular DTD activity may at least in part be attributed to the protection against menadione hepatotoxicity.

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