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Phytomedicine. 2010 Mar;17(3-4):212-8. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2009.08.010. Epub 2009 Oct 2.

Tanshinone II A attenuates inflammatory responses of rats with myocardial infarction by reducing MCP-1 expression.

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  • 1College of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Zhejiang University, 310058 Hangzhou, China.


The root of Salvia miltiorrhiza Bunge, a well-known traditional Chinese medicine, has been used effectively for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases for a long time. The mechanisms underlying this therapeutic effect are not, however, fully understood. Tanshinone IIA (Tan IIA) is one of the major active components of this Chinese medicine. Therefore, the present study was performed to investigate whether Tan IIA, which has shown a cardio-protective capacity in myocardial ischemia, has an inhibitory effect on the inflammatory responses following myocardial infarction (MI) and its potential mechanisms. In an in vivo study, rat MI model was induced by permanent left anterior descending coronary artery (LAD) ligation. After the operation rats were divided into three groups (sham, MI and Tan IIA). Tan IIA was administered intragastrically at a dose of 60mg/kg body wt./day. One week later, rats were sacrificed and the hemodynamic, pathological and molecular biological indices were examined. In an in vitro study, the inflammatory model was established by TNF-alpha stimuli on cardiacmyocyte and cardiac fibroblasts. Tan IIA attenuates the MI pathological changes and improves heart function, and reduces expression of MCP-1, TGF-beta(1) and macrophage infiltration. Furthermore, Tan IIA could also decrease the expression of TNF-alpha and activation of nuclear transcription factor-kappa B (NF-kappaB). In vitro, Tan IIA could reduce MCP-1 and TGF-beta(1)secretion of cardiac fibroblasts. The present study demonstrated that the cardioprotective effects of Tan IIA might be attributed to its capacity for inhibiting inflammatory responses.

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