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Food Chem Toxicol. 2007 Aug;45(8):1459-67. Epub 2007 Feb 20.

Anthocyanins inhibit airway inflammation and hyperresponsiveness in a murine asthma model.

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Korea Institute of Toxicology, Korea Research Institute of Chemical Technology, Yuseong, Daejeon 305-600, Republic of Korea.


Asthma is a common chronic inflammatory disease regulated by coordination of T-helper cell type 2 (Th2) cytokines and inflammatory signal molecules. Additionally, oxidative stress may play an important role in airway inflammation such as eosinophilia, mucus hypersecretion, and airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR). In the present report, we investigated whether anthocyanins would reduce airway inflammation in a mouse asthma model immunized and challenged with ovalbumin (OVA). OVA inhalation elicited inflammatory responses characterized by eosinophilia and increased lipid hydroperoxide (LPO) in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid, enhanced pause (Penh), increased glycoprotein and proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) expressions in mucus hypersecretion, and an increased expression of various cytokines and cyclooxygenase (COX) 2 in lung tissues. All parameters were attenuated in a dose-dependant manner by the administration of anthocyanins. These results suggest that anthocyanins may attenuate the development of asthma by downregulating Th2 cytokines, proinflammatory cytokines, and COX-2. Our findings suggest that anthocyanins have positive contributions as a dietary supplement for the prevention of asthma.

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