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Exp Mol Pathol. 1989 Aug;51(1):48-55.

Prevention of hepatotoxic responses to chemicals by glycyrrhizin in rats.

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Department of Pathology, Osaka Medical College, Japan.


To clarify whether glycyrrhizin, the aqueous extract of licorice root and a drug for treatment of chronic active hepatitis, prevents the development of hepatic injury induced by carbon tetrachloride, allyl formate, and endotoxin, the present study was undertaken in rats. The treatment with glycyrrhizin 20 hr before carbon tetrachloride administration protected the development of the pericentral hepatocellular necrosis. Glycyrrhizin treatment 2 hr prior to the administration of allyl formate also inhibited the development of the periportal hepatocellular necrosis. However, glycyrrhizin did not protect the development of endotoxin-induced focal and random hepatocellular necrosis. These experimental results suggest that glycyrrhizin has no protective effect on hepatic injury following sinusoidal circulatory disturbance as seen in the case of endotoxin and that glycyrrhizin can protect against hepatotoxicity induced by the direct action on the hepatocytes due to hepatotoxins, such as carbon tetrachloride and allyl formate.

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