Exp Neurobiol 2008; 17(2): 71-78
Published online December 31, 2008
© The Korean Society for Brain and Neural Sciences
Hyung-Jin Jung1, Young-Sick Kim2, Mal-Soon Shin2, Chang-Ju Kim2 and Youn-Sub Kim1*
1Department of Anatomy-Pointology, College of Oriental Medicine, Kyungwon University, Sungnam 461-701, 2Department of Physiology, College of Medicine, Kyunghee Universty, Seoul 130-701, Korea
Correspondence to: *To whom correspondence should be addressed.
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Armeniacae semen has been used in traditional medicine for the treatment of pain and inflammatory diseases. Amygdalin is the major compound of Armeniacae semen, and it is used for treatment of pain and cancers. In the present study, we compared the effects of aqueous extract of Armeniacae semen and a solution of amygdalin extracted from Armeniacae semen on the lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), and inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) mRNA expressions in mouse BV2 microglial cells. We also compared the effects of these compounds on the prostaglandin E2 synthesis and the nitric oxide production in mouse BV2 microglial cells. In the present results, Armeniacae semen and amygdalin suppressed prostaglandin E2 synthesis and nitric oxide production by inhibiting the LPS-induced enhancement of COX-2 mRNA and iNOS mRNA expressions in mouse BV2 cells. For the COX-1 expression, Armeniacae semen showed more potent suppression effect compared to the amygdalin. However, amygdalin more potently suppressed the LPS-induced COX-2 mRNA expression compared to aqueous extract of Armeniacae semen. In the case of iNOS mRNA expression, Armeniacae semen and amygdalin showed similar suppressing effects. For the LPS-induced PGE2 synthesis, amygdalin showed more potent suppressing effect, meanwhile, Armeniacae semen and amygdalin showed similar suppressing effect on NO production. Based on the present results, amygdalin may exert anti-inflammatory and analgesic effect though mainly the inhibition of COX-2 pathway, in contrast Armeniacae semen may exert such effect though both the inhibition of COX-2 and iNOS pathways.
Keywords: amygdalin, Armeniacae semen, cyclooxygenase, inducible nitric oxide synthase, prostaglandin E2, nitric oxide