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Pharmazie. 2014 Dec;69(12):894-7.

Effect of licorice on the induction of phase II metabolizing enzymes and phase III transporters and its possible mechanism.


Licorice has a marked detoxifying effect that can treat drug poisoning and/or relieve adverse effects. However, the exact mechanism of this action is not entirely elucidated, but is believed to be related to the modulation of drug disposition when interacting with other drugs. Additionally, Nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) plays a significant role in mediating phase II xenobiotic metabolizing enzymes (XMEs) and phase III transporters. In the present study, we showed that licorice induced the mRNA expression of phase II XMEs UDP-glucuronosyltransferases 1A1 (UGT1A1), glutamate cysteine ligase (GCL), glutathione-s-transferase (GST) and phase III transporters multidrug resistance protein 2 (MRP2), as well as a rapid increase in Nrf2 nuclear accumulation. These findings suggests that licorice may intervene in the Nrf2 signal pathway to induce UGT1A1, GCLC, GST and MRP2, which provide a novel mechanism for the use of licorice to treat drug poisoning and/or relieve adverse effects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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