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Biomed Chromatogr. 2018 Oct;32(10):e4299. doi: 10.1002/bmc.4299. Epub 2018 Jul 4.

Metabolic alterations in triptolide-induced acute hepatotoxicity.

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Hebei Medical University, School of Pharmaceutical Science, Shijiazhuang, Hebei, China.
National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, Laboratory of Metabolism, Center for Cancer Research, Bethesda, Maryland, USA.


Triptolide, a major active constitute of Tripterygium wilfordii Hook. F, is prescribed for the treatment of autoimmune diseases in China. One of its most severe adverse effects observed in the clinical use is hepatotoxicity, but the mechanism is still unknown. Therefore, the present study applied an LC/MS-based metabolomic analysis to characterize the metabolomic changes in serum and liver induced by triptolide in mice. Mice were administered triptolide by gavage to establish the acute liver injury model, and serum biochemical and liver histological analyses were applied to assess the degree of toxicity. Multivariate data analyses were performed to investigate the metabolic alterations. Potential metabolites were identified using variable importance in the projection values and Student's t-test. A total of 30 metabolites were observed that were significantly changed by triptolide treatment and the abundance of 29 metabolites was correlated with the severity of toxicity. Pathway analysis indicated that the mechanism of triptolide-induced hepatotoxicity was related to alterations in multiple metabolic pathways, including glutathione metabolism, tricarboxylic acid cycle, purine metabolism, glycerophospholipid metabolism, taurine and hypotaurine metabolism, pantothenate and CoA biosynthesis, pyrimidine metabolism and amino acid metabolism. The current study provides new mechanistic insights into the metabolic alterations that lead to triptolide-induced hepatotoxicity.


HILIC; UPLC-ESI-QTOFMS; hepatotoxicity; metabolomics; triptolide

[Available on 2019-10-01]
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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