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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A novel 11 beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase inhibitor contained in saiboku-to, a herbal remedy for steroid-dependent bronchial asthma.

To identify the inhibitor of prednisolone metabolism contained in Saiboku-To, we conducted in-vitro experiments of 11 beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (11 beta-HSD), using rat liver homogenate and cortisol as a typical substrate. We studied the effects of ten herbal constituents on 11 beta-HSD. Five herbal extracts showed inhibitory activity with Glycyrrhiza glabra > Perillae frutescens > Zizyphus vulgaris > Magnolia officinalis > Scutellaria baicalensis. This suggests that unknown 11 beta-HSD inhibitors are contained in four herbs other than G. glabra which contains a known inhibitor, glycyrrhizin (and glycyrrhetinic acid). Seven chemical constituents which have been identified as the major urinary products of Saiboku-To in healthy and asthmatic subjects were studied; magnolol derived from M. officinalis showed the most potent inhibition of the enzyme (IC50, 1.8 x 10(-4) M). Although this activity was less than that of glycyrrhizin, the inhibition mechanism (non-competitive) was different from a known competitive mechanism. These results suggest that magnolol might contribute to the inhibitory effects of Saiboku-To on prednisolone metabolism through inhibition of 11 beta-HSD.[1]


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