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J Ethnopharmacol. 2011 Jan 7;133(1):37-45. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2010.08.062. Epub 2010 Sep 9.

The effect of bamboo extract on hepatic biotransforming enzymes--findings from an obese-diabetic mouse model.

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Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, John A. Burns School of Medicine, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, HI 96813, USA.



Bamboo leaves are used as a component in traditional Chinese medicine for the anti-inflammatory function. Our previous studies have demonstrated that an ethanol/water extract from Phyllostachys edulis ameliorated obesity-associated chronic systemic inflammation in mice, and therefore relieving the symptoms of type 2 diabetes. The aim of this project was to further investigate the effects of this bamboo extract on hepatic biotransformation enzymes in both lean and obese mice, as an initial step in the toxicological evaluation of using this traditional medicine in obese/diabetic population.


Male C57BL/6J mice were randomized to 4 groups and fed standard (10% kcal from fat) diet with or without bamboo extract supplementation at a dose of 10 gram per kilogram diet (n=10 and n=9, respectively), or high fat (45% kcal from fat) diet with or without bamboo extract (n=8 and N=7, respectively). The dietary treatment lasted for 6 months. Subsequently, the activities and expression of the major Phase I and II hepatic biotransformation enzymes were assessed in subcellular fractions from murine livers.


Three groups of mice, lean bamboo extract-supplemented, obese/diabetic, and bamboo extract-supplemented obese/diabetic, showed greater activities of cytochromes P450 1a2 and 3a11 compared to control but no changes in the expression level of these proteins. For Phase II enzymes, bamboo extract supplementation in lean mice caused decreased glutathione-S-transferase activity (-12%) and greater uridine diphosphate glucuronosyltransferase activity (+46%), but had no effect on sulfotransferase activity. Conversely, the obese/diabetic condition itself increased glutathione-S-transferase and uridine diphosphate glucuronosyltransferase activities, but decreased total sulfotransferase activity and sulfotransferase 2a1 expression.


Bamboo extract and obesity/diabetes show significant independent effects on hepatic biotransformation as well as interaction effects in mice. These changes may alter the clearance of endo- and xenobiotics, including bamboo extract itself, hence this effect should be carefully considered in the medicinal application of bamboo extract as it has potential to alter its own metabolism and that of other medications concurrently administered to obese diabetic patients.

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