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J Pharm Pharmacol. 2009 Aug;61(8):1089-96. doi: 10.1211/jpp/61.08.0013.

Inhibition of inducible nitric oxide synthesis by Cimicifuga racemosa (Actaea racemosa, black cohosh) extracts in LPS-stimulated RAW 264.7 macrophages.

Author information

1
Institute for Physiology, Section of Vegetative Physiology, Center for Physiology and Pharmacology, Medical University of Vienna, Austria.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Cimicifuga racemosa (Actaea racemosa, black cohosh) is used as an anti-inflammatory, antipyretic and analgesic remedy in traditional medicines. The present study focuses on the effects of C. racemosa root extracts on inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in lipopolysaccharide-stimulated murine macrophages (RAW 264.7).

METHODS:

C. racemosa rhizome and phosphate-buffered saline extracts were analysed for phenolcarboxylic acids and triterpene glycosides using an HPLC photodiode array/evaporative light-scattering detector system. iNOS was characterised by measurement of iNOS protein (immunoblotting), iNOS mRNA (semiquantitative competitive RT-PCR), nitric oxide production (nitrite levels) and nuclear translocation of nuclear factor-kappaB (p65 subunit) protein.

KEY FINDINGS:

Incubation of lipopolysaccharide-stimulated macrophages with aqueous C. racemosa extracts (0-6 mg/ml) inhibited nitrite accumulation in a concentration-dependent manner. C. racemosa extracts also reduced iNOS protein expression and iNOS mRNA levels in a dose-dependent manner. C. racemosa extracts did not significantly inhibit iNOS activity and did not affect nuclear translocation of nuclear factor-kappaB (p65 subunit) protein. Incubation with the extract was associated with a concentration-dependent reduction of interferon beta and interferon regulatory factor 1 mRNA. Among the triterpene glycosides, 23-epi-26-deoxyactein was identified as an active principle in C. racemosa extracts.

CONCLUSIONS:

Extracts from the roots of C. racemosa inhibit nitric oxide production by reducing iNOS expression without affecting activity of the enzyme. This might contribute to the anti-inflammatory activities of C. racemosa.

PMID:
19703353
DOI:
10.1211/jpp/61.08.0013
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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