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Nature China: 点评陈竺院士中药复方分子机理论文 精选

已有 9133 次阅读 2008-3-26 22:52 |个人分类:科学方法

中药:古老药方的现代新解
提要:现代生物化学分析告诉我们一个古老药方的主要成份是如何“和谐行动”治疗疾病的。
 
中医理论认为一个复方应该有4个主要成份,每种成份都有自己独特的作用,它们协同作用可以达致最佳的治疗效果。这4种主要成份在古代典籍里被称为“君、臣、佐、使”。但是,中药复方的联合作用的分子机理一直没有能够得到令人信服的阐明。上海交通大学的陈竺、陈赛娟与合作者一道,以一个著名的临床疗效确切的治疗白血病的中药复方为对象,揭示了每种主要成份的生化作用。
这个复方的主要成份是雄黄、青黛和丹参,简称RIF。通过分子分析,研究者们显示,雄黄里的砷化合物是该方的“君”药,它直接攻击白血病细胞里的癌蛋白受体。青黛里面的靛玉红是“佐”药,主要减弱“君”药的毒性,同时可以减慢癌细胞的生长速度。丹参里面的丹参酮作为“臣”药,它在一定程度上能恢复那些能够阻止白血病细胞扩散的代谢途径。最后,靛玉红和丹参酮一起发挥“使”药的作用,它们通过提高细胞膜上的通道蛋白基因的表达水平,增加通道蛋白的数量,来促使癌细胞吸收更多的砷化合物。
这项研究解释了一个临床疗效很好的中药复方主要成份的分子作用及其协同作用的机理,对于中国传统医学与现代医学的沟通具有重要意义。

 

Traditional Chinese medicine: Ancient formula in modern times
Felix Cheung
Abstract
Modern biochemical analysis gives an insight into how major ingredients of an ancient Chinese remedy work in harmony to treat diseases
Original article citation
Wang, L. et al. Dissection of mechanisms of Chinese medicinal formula Realgar-Indigo naturalis as an effective treatment for promyelocytic leukemia. PNAS 105, 4826–4831 (2008).
Introduction
Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) follows the tenet that a formula should have four major ingredients, each playing its unique role while working together synergistically, to achieve the optimum therapy. The four major ingredients have been described in ancient texts as 'emperor', 'minister', 'assistant' and 'delivering servant'. However, the molecular basis of such combination therapy has never been explained convincingly at the biochemical level for any known TCM formula. Zhu Chen and Saijuan Chen at Shanghai Jiao Tong University and co-workers1 have taken one well-known and clinically tested TCM formula for leukaemia therapy as a model and unveiled the biochemical roles of each ingredient.
The formula, known as realgar–Indigo naturalis formula (RIF), contains realgar and indigo minerals, as well as the herb red sage root. Through molecular analyses, the researchers showed that arsenic in realgar works as 'emperor' by directly attacking the receptor oncoprotein in leukaemia cells. Indirubin, the active ingredient in indigo, works as 'assistant' by antagonizing the toxicity of arsenic and slowing leukaemia cell growth. Tanshinone, the active ingredient in red sage root, acts as 'minister' by partially restoring those pathways that stop leukaemia spreading. Lastly, indurbin and tanshinone work as 'delivering servants'; these ingredients can enhance the cellular uptake of arsenic by increasing the gene-expression level and therefore the synthesis of carrier pore proteins in the cell membrane.
The study explains the molecular modes and synergistic effects of principal ingredients in a clinically proven TCM formula. This finding will help bridge the gap between TCM and modern medical sciences.
The authors of this work are from:
State Key Laboratory of Medical Genomics and Shanghai Institute of Hematology, Ruijin Hospital, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China; Guangzhou Institute of Biomedicine and Health, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou, China; Shanghai Center for Systems Biomedicine, School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai, China; Department of Biostatistics, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China.
Reference
  1. Wang, L. et al. Dissection of mechanisms of Chinese medicinal formula Realgar-Indigo naturalis as an effective treatment for promyelocytic leukemia. PNAS 105, 4826–4831 (2008).
 


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