Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine http://www.hindawi.com The latest articles from Hindawi Publishing Corporation © 2016 , Hindawi Publishing Corporation . All rights reserved. The Effects of Positive or Neutral Communication during Acupuncture for Relaxing Effects: A Sham-Controlled Randomized Trial Thu, 11 Feb 2016 12:11:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/3925878/ Introduction. The link between patient-clinician communication and its effect on clinical outcomes is an important clinical issue that is yet to be elucidated. Objective. Investigating if communication type (positive or neutral) about the expected treatment outcome affected (i) participants’ expectations and (ii) short-term relaxation effects in response to genuine or sham acupuncture and investigating if expectations were related to outcome. Methods. Healthy volunteers (, mean age of 42) were randomized to one treatment with genuine or sham acupuncture. Within groups, participants were randomized to positive or neutral communication, regarding expected treatment effects. Visual Analogue Scales (0–100 millimeters) were used to measure treatment expectations and relaxation, directly before and after treatment. Results. Participants in the positive communication group reported higher treatment expectancy, compared to the neutral communication group (md 12 versus 6 mm, ). There was no difference in relaxation effects between acupuncture groups or between communication groups. Participants with high baseline expectancy perceived greater improvement in relaxation, compared to participants with low baseline levels (md 27 versus 15 mm, ). Conclusion. Our data highlights the importance of expectations for treatment outcome and demonstrates that expectations can be effectively manipulated using a standardized protocol that in future research may be implemented in clinical trials. Annelie Rosén, Mats Lekander, Karin Jensen, Lisbeth Sachs, Predrag Petrovic, Martin Ingvar, and Anna Enblom Copyright © 2016 Annelie Rosén et al. All rights reserved. Effects of Cymbidium Root Ethanol Extract on Atopic Dermatitis Thu, 11 Feb 2016 11:39:58 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/5362475/ Cymbidium has known antibacterial and antiedema activity and has been used as an ingredient in cosmetics and fragrances. The effects of Cymbidium ethanol extract (CYM) on allergic response and the underlying mechanisms of action have not been reported. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine the effect of CYM on allergic responses. Topical application of CYM was effective against immunoglobulin E (IgE)/dinitrophenyl-conjugated bovine serum albumin- (DNP-BSA-) induced degranulation of RBL-2H3 cells and anaphylaxis in ICR mice. An allergic dermatitis-like mouse model was used to evaluate the therapeutic potential of CYM in vivo. Continuous application of 2,4-dinitrochlorobenzene (DNCB) not only induced dermatitis in ICR mice but also aggravated the skin lesioning. However, the application of CYM decreased skin lesion severity, scratching behavior, and IgE levels. In addition, CYM downregulated the expression of the proinflammatory cytokines interleukin- (IL-) 4, IL-13, and tumor necrosis factor- (TNF-) α. Studies of signal transduction pathways showed that CYM suppressed the phosphorylation of spleen tyrosine kinase (Syk), an upstream molecule. It also inhibited the phosphorylation of Akt, phospholipase C- (PLC-) γ, and mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase (MEKK). These results indicate that CYM may be effective in preventing and reducing allergic response and may have therapeutic potential as an antiallergic agent in disorders such as atopic dermatitis. Wan-Joong Kim, Hae-Sim Cha, Myung-Hun Lee, Sun-Young Kim, Seo Ho Kim, and Tack-Joong Kim Copyright © 2016 Wan-Joong Kim et al. All rights reserved. Assessment of Cardiovascular Parameters during Meditation with Mental Targeting in Varsity Swimmers Thu, 11 Feb 2016 06:56:24 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/7923234/ Introduction. Athletes who develop an immunosuppressed state because of intensive training get upper respiratory infections (URIs) and may respond to meditation. Reflective exercise (RE), a westernized form of Qigong, combines meditation, breathing, and targeted mental attention to an internal pulsatile sensation, previously shown to protect varsity swimmers from URIs during the height of training. We report here the evaluation of cardiovascular parameters measured during meditation combined with targeted imagery (interoception) in a cohort of varsity swimmers taught RE. Methods. Thirteen subjects were enrolled on a prospective protocol that used the CareTaker, a noninvasive cardiovascular monitor before, during, and after RE training. Questionnaires regarding targeted mental imagery focusing on a pulsatile sensation were collected. The cardiovascular parameters include heart rate, blood pressure, and heart rate variability (HRV). Results. Increased variance in the subjects’ BP and HRV was observed over the training period of 8 weeks. In nine subjects there was an increased low frequency (LF) HRV that was significantly () associated with the subject’s awareness of the pulsatile sensation that makes up a basic part of the RE practice. Summary. These data support further evaluation of HRV measurements in subjects while meditating with mental imagery. This direction could contribute to better understanding of neurocardiac mechanisms that relate meditation to enhanced immunity. Tyvin A. Rich, Robert Pfister, John Alton, David Gerdt, and Martin Baruch Copyright © 2016 Tyvin A. Rich et al. All rights reserved. Acupuncture for Pain Management in Cancer: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis Wed, 10 Feb 2016 11:39:39 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/1720239/ Objective. To evaluate the effectiveness and safety of acupuncture for cancer-related pain. Methods. A systematic review of literatures published from database inception to February 2015 was conducted in eight databases. RCTs involving acupuncture for treatment of cancer-related pain were identified. Two researchers independently performed article selection, data extraction, and quality assessment of data. Results. 1,639 participants in twenty RCTs were analyzed. All selected RCTs were associated with high risk of bias. Meta-analysis indicated that acupuncture alone did not have superior pain-relieving effects as compared with conventional drug therapy. However, as compared with the drug therapy alone, acupuncture plus drug therapy resulted in increased pain remission rate, shorter onset time of pain relief, longer pain-free duration, and better quality of life without serious adverse effects. However, GRADE analysis revealed that the quality of all outcomes about acupuncture plus drug therapy was very low. Conclusions. Acupuncture plus drug therapy is more effective than conventional drug therapy alone for cancer-related pain. However, multicenter high-quality RCTs with larger sample sizes are needed to provide stronger evidence for the effectiveness of acupuncture in cancer-related pain due to the low data quality of the studies included in the current meta-analysis. Caiqiong Hu, Haibo Zhang, Wanyin Wu, Weiqing Yu, Yong Li, Jianping Bai, Baohua Luo, and Shuping Li Copyright © 2016 Caiqiong Hu et al. All rights reserved. Selective Inhibition of Bakuchicin Isolated from Psoralea corylifolia on CYP1A in Human Liver Microsomes Tue, 09 Feb 2016 08:16:07 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/5198743/ Bakuchicin is a furanocoumarin isolated from Psoralea corylifolia and shows several biological activities. Although there have been studies on the biological effects of bakuchicin, its modulation potency of CYP activities has not been previously investigated. Here, we investigated the inhibitory effects of bakuchicin on the activities of CYP isoforms by using a cocktail of probe substrates in pooled human liver microsomes (HLMs) and human recombinant cDNA-expressed CYP. Bakuchicin strongly inhibited CYP1A-mediated phenacetin O-deethylation with an IC50 value of 0.43 μM in HLMs. It was confirmed by human recombinant cDNA-expressed CYP1A1 and CYP1A2 with a value of 0.11 μM and 0.32 μM, respectively. A Lineweaver-Burk plot indicated that the inhibition mechanism of bakuchicin was competitive inhibition. Overall, this is the first study to investigate the potential CYP1A1 and CYP1A2 inhibition associated with bakuchicin and to report its competitive inhibitory effects on HLMs. Sun Joo Kim, Heung Chan Oh, Youn-Chul Kim, Gil-Saeng Jeong, and Sangkyu Lee Copyright © 2016 Sun Joo Kim et al. All rights reserved. Qi-Shen-Yi-Qi Dripping Pills Promote Angiogenesis of Ischemic Cardiac Microvascular Endothelial Cells by Regulating MicroRNA-233-3p Expression Mon, 08 Feb 2016 14:24:17 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/5057328/ Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) research shows that Qi-Shen-Yi-Qi Dripping Pills (QSYQ) can promote ischemic cardiac angiogenesis. Studies have shown that microRNAs (miRNAs) are the key component of gene regulation networks, which play a vital role in angiogenesis and cardiovascular disease. Mechanisms involving miRNA by which TCM promotes ischemic cardiac angiogenesis have not been reported. We found that microRNA-223-3p (mir-223-3p) was the core miRNA of angiogenesis of rats ischemic cardiac microvascular endothelial cells (CMECs) and inhibited angiogenesis by affecting RPS6KB1/HIF-1α signal pathway in previous study. Based on the results, we observed biological characteristics and optimal dosage for QSYQ intervening in rats ischemic CMECs angiogenesis and concluded that QSYQ low-dose group had the strongest ability to promote angiogenesis of ischemic myocardium. Using miRNA chip and real-time PCR techniques in this study, we identified mir-233-3p as the pivotal miRNA in QSYQ that regulated angiogenesis of ischemic CMECs. From real-time PCR and western blot analysis, research showed that gene and protein expression of factors located RPS6KB1/HIF-1α signaling pathway, including HIF-1α, VEGF, MAPK, PI3K, and AKT, were significantly upregulated by QSYQ to regulate angiogenesis of ischemic CMECs. This study showed that QSYQ promote ischemic cardiac angiogenesis by downregulating mir-233-3p expression in rats ischemic CMECs. Guo-Hua Dai, Ning Liu, Jing-Wei Zhu, Jing Yao, Chun Yang, Pei-Ze Ma, and Xian-Bo Song Copyright © 2016 Guo-Hua Dai et al. All rights reserved. Analgesic and Antipyretic Activities of Methanol Extract and Its Fraction from the Root of Schoenoplectus grossus Mon, 08 Feb 2016 12:10:13 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/3820704/ The study aims to evaluate analgesic and antipyretic activities of the methanol extract and its different fractions from root of Schoenoplectus grossus using acetic acid induced writhing and radiant heat tail flick method of pain models in mice and yeast induced pyrexia in rats at the doses of 400 and 200 mg/kg. In acetic acid writhing test, the methanol extract, petroleum ether, and carbon tetrachloride fractions produced significant ( and ) inhibition of writhing responses in dose dependent manner. The methanol extract at 400 and 200 mg/kg being more protective with 54% and 45.45% of inhibition compared to diclofenac sodium of 56% followed by petroleum ether fractions of 49.69% and 39.39% at the same doses. The extracts did not produce any significant antinociceptive activity in tail flick test except standard morphine. When studied on yeast induced pyrexia, methanol and petroleum ether fractions significantly lowered the rectal temperature time dependently in a manner similar to standard drug paracetamol and distinctly more significant () after second hour. These findings suggest that the root extracts of S. grossus possess significant peripherally acting analgesic potential and antipyretic property. The phytochemical screening showed the presence of flavonoids, alkaloids, and tannins. Nirmal Kumar Subedi, S. M. Abdur Rahman, and Mohammad Ahsanul Akbar Copyright © 2016 Nirmal Kumar Subedi et al. All rights reserved. Chinese Herbal Medicine Fuzheng Kang-Ai Decoction Inhibited Lung Cancer Cell Growth through AMPKα-Mediated Induction and Interplay of IGFBP1 and FOXO3a Thu, 04 Feb 2016 12:14:50 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/5060757/ The aim of this study is to investigate the actions of Chinese herbal medicine, called “Fuzheng Kang-Ai” (FZKA for short) decoction, against non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and its mechanisms in vitro and in vivo. We showed that the effect of FZKA decoction significantly inhibited growth of A549 and PC9 cells. Furthermore, FZKA increased phosphorylation of AMP-activated protein kinase alpha (AMPKα) and induced protein expression of insulin-like growth factor (IGF) binding protein 1 (IGFBP1) and forkhead homeobox type O3a (FOXO3a). The specific inhibitor of AMPKα (Compound C) blocked FZKA-induced protein expression of IGFBP1 and FOXO3a. Interestingly, silencing of IGFBP1 and FOXO3a overcame the inhibitory effect of FZKA on cell growth. Moreover, silencing of IGFBP1 attenuated the effect of FZKA decoction on FOXO3a expression, and exogenous expression of FOXO3a enhanced the FZKA-stimulated phosphorylation of AMPKα. Accordingly, FZKA inhibited the tumor growth in xenograft nude mice model. Collectively, our results show that FZKA decoction inhibits proliferation of NSCLC cells through activation of AMPKα, followed by induction of IGFBP1 and FOXO3a proteins. Exogenous expression of FOXO3a feedback enhances FZKA decoction-stimulated IGFBP1 expression and phosphorylation of AMPKα. The reciprocal interplay of IGFBP1 and FOXO3a contribute to the overall responses of FAKA decoction. Fang Zheng, Jingjing Wu, Xiong Li, Qing Tang, LiJun Yang, Xiaobing Yang, WanYin Wu, and Swei Sunny Hann Copyright © 2016 Fang Zheng et al. All rights reserved. Attenuation of Oxidative Stress of Erythrocytes by Plant-Derived Flavonoids, Orientin and Luteolin Thu, 04 Feb 2016 07:12:09 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/3401269/ Erythrocytes are easy to be injured by oxidative stress in their lifespan. Although there are several chemicals such as vitamin C (VC) that would be able to reduce oxidative stress, natural herbal products still remain an interesting research area. The current study investigated the effects of two plant-derived flavonoids, orientin and luteolin, on erythrocytes and their possible mechanisms. This experiment was divided into nine groups, which were normal group, model group, VC control group, and treated groups with different doses of orientin and luteolin (10, 20, and 40 μg/mL), respectively. Hemolysis rate was determined by spectrophotometry. Antioxidative enzyme and products were evaluated by different methods. Erythrocyte cell surface and cellular structure were observed with scanning or transmission electron microscope, respectively. Oxidative stress induced significant increase in hemolysis rate of erythrocytes. Orientin or luteolin ameliorated hemolysis of erythrocytes in oxidative stress in a dose-dependent manner. Both orientin and luteolin reduced oxidative products and increased antioxidative enzyme activities. Moreover, orientin and luteolin attenuated oxidative stress induced damage of erythrocyte cell surface morphology and cellular structure. In conclusion, orientin and luteolin could protect human erythrocytes from oxidative damage by attenuating oxidative stress, protecting antioxidative enzyme activities, and preserving integrity of erythrocyte structure. Fang An, Shulin Wang, Danhua Yuan, Yuewen Gong, and Shuhua Wang Copyright © 2016 Fang An et al. All rights reserved. Colchicum autumnale in Patients with Goitre with Euthyroidism or Mild Hyperthyroidism: Indications for a Therapeutic Regulative Effect—Results of an Observational Study Wed, 03 Feb 2016 14:19:49 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/2541912/ Introduction. Goitre with euthyroid function or with subclinical or mild hyperthyroidism due to thyroid autonomy is common. In anthroposophic medicine various thyroid disorders are treated with Colchicum autumnale (CAU). We examined the effects of CAU in patients with goitre of both functional states. Patients and methods. In an observational study, 24 patients with goitre having suppressed thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) levels with normal or slightly elevated free thyroxine (fT4) and free triiodothyronine (fT3) (group 1, ) or normal TSH, fT3, and fT4 (group 2, ) were included. After 3 months and after 6 to 12 months of CAU treatment, we investigated clinical pathology using the Hyperthyroid Symptom Scale (HSS), hormone status (TSH, fT4, and fT3), and thyroidal volume (tV). Results. After treatment with CAU, in group 1 the median HSS decreased from 4.5 (2.3–11.8) to 2 (1.3–3) () and fT3 decreased from 3.85 (3.5–4.78) to 3.45 (3.3–3.78) pg/mL (). In group 2 tV (13.9% (18.5%–6.1%)) and TSH () were reduced. Linear regression for TSH and fT3 in both groups indicated a regulative therapeutic effect of CAU. Conclusions. CAU positively changed the clinical pathology of subclinical hyperthyroidism and thyroidal volume in patients with euthyroid goitre by normalization of the regulation of thyroidal hormones. Christian Scheffer, Marion Debus, Christian Heckmann, Dirk Cysarz, and Matthias Girke Copyright © 2016 Christian Scheffer et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Combination of Chinese Herbal Medicine versus Western Medicine on Mortality in Patients after Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials Wed, 03 Feb 2016 09:19:25 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/3506757/ Introduction. Although Chinese herbal medicine (CHM) treatment combined with conventional western therapy has been widely used and reported in many clinical trials in China, there is uncertainty about the efficacy of this combination in the treatment of patients after cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). This systematic review aimed to assess whether the risk of mortality has decreased comparing the combination of CHM treatment with conventional western therapy. Methods. To identify relevant studies, the literature search was conducted in Medline, Embase, the Cochrane Library, CBM, CNKI, VIP, and Wanfang database. We included all randomized controlled trials (RCTs) that compared outcomes of patients after CPR taking combination of CHM treatment with those taking just conventional western therapy. Results. This meta-analysis showed that patients randomly assigned to combined CHM treatment group had a statistically significant 23% reduction in mortality compared with those randomly assigned to conventional western therapy group (RR: 0.77; 95% CI: 0.70–0.84). Conclusions. This meta-analysis provides evidence suggesting that a combined CHM therapy is associated with a decreased risk of mortality compared with conventional western therapy in patients after CPR. Further studies are needed to provide more evidence to prove or refute our conclusion and identify reasons for the reduction of mortality. Wenxiu Guo, Xiaoguang Lu, Dalong Wang, Tuo Chen, Zhiwei Fan, and Yi Song Copyright © 2016 Wenxiu Guo et al. All rights reserved. Clinical Effect and Mechanism of Yisui Shengxue Granules in Thalassemia Patients with Mild, Moderate, or Severe Anemia Tue, 02 Feb 2016 13:10:16 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/1713897/ Yisui Shengxue granules, which is a Chinese traditional medicine, can increase hemoglobin, red blood cells, and Ret of thalassemia patients with mild, moderate, and severe anemia and thus relieve clinical anemia symptoms. Studies on mechanism found that Yisui Shengxue granules can increase the proliferation ability of hematopoietic stem cells. Emodin promoted colony forming of hematopoietic stem cells. Yisui Shengxue granules can increase the activity of GSH-PX in bone marrow blood and decreased the severity of inclusion bodies on the cytomembrane of RBCs. YSSXG attenuated anemia symptoms in patients with thalassemia mostly by increasing the proliferation of hematopoietic stem cells and decreasing the hemolysis of RBCs. Yan-Ling Cheng, Xin-Hua Zhang, Yu-Wen Sun, Wen-Juan Wang, Su-Ping Fang, and Zhi-Kui Wu Copyright © 2016 Yan-Ling Cheng et al. All rights reserved. Naoxintong Protects Primary Neurons from Oxygen-Glucose Deprivation/Reoxygenation Induced Injury through PI3K-Akt Signaling Pathway Tue, 02 Feb 2016 09:41:50 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/5815946/ Naoxintong capsule (NXT), developed from Buyang Huanwu Decoction, has shown the neuroprotective effects in cerebrovascular diseases, but the neuroprotection mechanisms of NXT on ischemia/reperfusion injured neurons have not yet been well known. In this study, we established the oxygen-glucose deprivation/reoxygenation (OGD/R) induced neurons injury model and treat the neurons with cerebrospinal fluid containing NXT (BNC) to investigate the effects of NXT on OGD/R induced neurons injury and potential mechanisms. BNC improved neuron viability and decreased apoptotic rate induced by OGD/R. BNC attenuated OGD/R induced cytosolic and mitochondrial Ca2+ overload, ROS generation, intracellular NO levels and nNOS mRNA increase, and cytochrome-c release when compared with OGD/R group. BNC significantly inhibited both mPTP opening and depolarization. BNC increased Bcl-2 expression and decreased Bax expression, upregulated the Bcl-2/Bax ratio, downregulated caspase-3 mRNA and caspase-9 mRNA expression, and decreased cleaved caspase-3 expression and caspase-3 activity. BNC increased phosphorylation of Akt following OGD/R, while LY294002 attenuated BNC induced increase of phosphorylated Akt expression. Our study demonstrated that NXT protected primary neurons from OGD/R induced injury by inhibiting calcium overload and ROS generation, protecting mitochondria, and inhibiting mitochondrial apoptotic pathway which was mediated partially by PI3K-Akt signaling pathway activation. Yan Ma, Pei Zhao, Jinqiang Zhu, Chen Yan, Lin Li, Han Zhang, Meng Zhang, Xiumei Gao, and Xiang Fan Copyright © 2016 Yan Ma et al. All rights reserved. Repeated Electroacupuncture Persistently Elevates Adenosine and Ameliorates Collagen-Induced Arthritis in Rats Sun, 31 Jan 2016 16:52:30 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/3632168/ The aim of this paper was to investigate the effect of repeated electroacupuncture (EA) over 21 days on the adenosine concentration in peripheral blood of rats with collagen-induced arthritis (CIA). Wistar rats were divided into three groups of 6 animals each: sham-control, CIA-control, and CIA-EA. We determined the adenosine concentration in peripheral blood and assessed pathological changes of ankle joints. Quantitative reverse-transcription-polymerase chain reaction was used to determine mRNA levels of ecto-5′-nucleotidase (CD73), adenosine deaminase (ADA), and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α). Immunohistochemical staining was used to detect expression of ADA and CD73 in synovial tissue. Repeated EA treatment on CIA resulted in the persistence of high concentrations of adenosine in peripheral blood, significantly reduced pathological scores, TNF-α mRNA concentrations, and synovial hyperplasia. Importantly, EA treatment led to a significant increase in CD73 mRNA levels in peripheral blood but was associated with a decrease of CD73 immunostaining in synovial tissue. In addition, EA treatment resulted in a significant decrease of both ADA mRNA levels in peripheral blood and ADA immunostaining in synovial tissue. Thus, repeated EA treatment exerts an anti-inflammatory and immunoregulatory effect on CIA by increasing the concentration of adenosine. The mechanism of EA action may involve the modulation of CD73 and ADA expression levels. Tian-shen Ye, Zhong-heng Du, Zhi-hui Li, Wen-xia Xie, Ka-te Huang, Yong Chen, Zhou-yang Chen, Huan Hu, Jun-lu Wang, and Jian-Qiao Fang Copyright © 2016 Tian-shen Ye et al. All rights reserved. Protective Effects of L-Malate against Myocardial Ischemia/Reperfusion Injury in Rats Sun, 31 Jan 2016 11:07:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/3803657/ Objective. To investigate the protective effects of L-malate against myocardial ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) injury in rats. Methods. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly assigned to the following groups: sham (sham), an ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) model group (model), an DMF pretreated group (DMF), and 5 L-malate pretreated groups (15, 60, 120, 240, or 480 mg/kg, gavage) before inducing myocardial ischemia. Plasma LDH, cTn-I, TNF-, hs-CRP, SOD, and GSH-PX were measured 3 h later I/R. Areas of myocardial infarction were measured; hemodynamic parameters during I/R were recorded. Hearts were harvested and Western blot was used to quantify Nrf2, Keap1, HO-1, and NQO-1 expression in the myocardium. Results. L-malate significantly reduced LDH and cTn-I release, reduced myocardial infarct size, inhibited expression of inflammatory cytokines, and partially preserved heart function, as well as increasing antioxidant activity after myocardial I/R injury. Western blot confirmed that L-malate reduced Kelch-like ECH-associated protein 1 in ischemic myocardial tissue, upregulated expression of Nrf2 and Nrf2 nuclear translocation, and increased expression of heme oxygenase-1 and NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1, which are major targets of Nrf2. Conclusions. L-malate may protect against myocardial I/R injury in rats and this may be associated with activation of the Nrf2/Keap1 antioxidant pathway. Shiao Ding, Yang Yang, and Ju Mei Copyright © 2016 Shiao Ding et al. All rights reserved. Investigation of Calcium Channel Blockers as Antiprotozoal Agents and Their Interference in the Metabolism of Leishmania (L.) infantum Thu, 28 Jan 2016 16:50:21 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/1523691/ Leishmaniasis and Chagas disease are neglected parasitic diseases endemic in developing countries; efforts to find new therapies remain a priority. Calcium channel blockers (CCBs) are drugs in clinical use for hypertension and other heart pathologies. Based on previous reports about the antileishmanial activity of dihydropyridine-CCBs, this work aimed to investigate whether the in vitro anti-Leishmania infantum and anti-Trypanosoma cruzi activities of this therapeutic class would be shared by other non-dihydropyridine-CCBs. Except for amrinone, our results demonstrated antiprotozoal activity for fendiline, mibefradil, and lidoflazine, with IC50 values in a range between 2 and 16 μM and Selectivity Index between 4 and 10. Fendiline demonstrated depolarization of mitochondrial membrane potential, with increased reactive oxygen species production in amlodipine and fendiline treated Leishmania, but without plasma membrane disruption. Finally, in vitro combinations of amphotericin B, miltefosine, and pentamidine against L. infantum showed in isobolograms an additive interaction when these drugs were combined with fendiline, resulting in overall mean sum of fractional inhibitory concentrations between 0.99 and 1.10. These data demonstrated that non-dihydropyridine-CCBs present antiprotozoal activity and could be useful candidates for future in vivo efficacy studies against Leishmaniasis and Chagas’ disease. Juliana Quero Reimão, Juliana Tonini Mesquita, Daiane Dias Ferreira, and Andre Gustavo Tempone Copyright © 2016 Juliana Quero Reimão et al. All rights reserved. Nonsurgical Korean Integrative Treatments for Symptomatic Lumbar Spinal Stenosis: A Three-Armed Randomized Controlled Pilot Trial Protocol Thu, 28 Jan 2016 15:26:23 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/2913248/ This is a study protocol for a pilot three-armed randomized controlled trial on nonsurgical integrative Korean medicinal treatment for symptomatic lumbar spinal stenosis (LSS). Thirty-six participants who have been diagnosed with (LSS) and recommended for spinal surgery by neurosurgeons or orthopedics and have had spinal symptoms such as severe low back pain and neurological claudication regardless of at least three months of conservative treatments will be recruited. Participants will be randomly assigned to be one of the three intervention groups, including the Mokhuri treatment program group 1 or 2 or usual care group. All treatments will be administered in inpatient units over a period of 4 weeks. The primary outcomes are 0 to 100 Visual Analogue Scales for low back pain and leg pain and the secondary outcomes are Oswestry Disability Index; EQ-5D; Roland-Morris Disability Questionnaire; Oxford Claudication Score; physical function test, including treadmill test, walking duration, and distance assessment for free leg pain; radiologic testing; and adverse events which will be assessed during the 4-week treatment period as well as after 3 and 6 months of follow-up. Then, we will assess the feasibility of the clinical trial design as well as a nonsurgical integrative treatment program. This trial is registered with CRIS registration number: KCT0001218. Kiok Kim, Kyung-Min Shin, Jun-Hwan Lee, Bok-Nam Seo, So-Young Jung, Yousuk Youn, Sang Ho Lee, Jaehong Kim, Wenchun Qu, and Tae-Hun Kim Copyright © 2016 Kiok Kim et al. All rights reserved. Effect of Pulsed Electromagnetic Field on Bone Formation and Lipid Metabolism of Glucocorticoid-Induced Osteoporosis Rats through Canonical Wnt Signaling Pathway Thu, 28 Jan 2016 09:58:48 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/4927035/ Pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) has been suggested as a promising method alternative to drug-based therapies for treating osteoporosis (OP), but the role of PEMF in GIOP animal models still remains unknown. This study was performed to investigate the effect of PEMF on bone formation and lipid metabolism and further explored the several important components and targets of canonical Wnt signaling pathway in GIOP rats. After 12 weeks of intervention, bone mineral density (BMD) level of the whole body increased significantly, serum lipid levels decreased significantly, and trabeculae were thicker in GIOP rats of PEMF group. PEMF stimulation upregulated the mRNA and protein expression of Wnt10b, LRP5, β-catenin, OPG, and Runx2 and downregulated Axin2, PPAR-γ, C/EBPα, FABP4, and Dkk-1. The results of this study suggested that PEMF stimulation can prevent bone loss and improve lipid metabolism disorders in GIOP rats. Canonical Wnt signaling pathway plays an important role in bone formation and lipid metabolism during PEMF stimulation. Yuan Jiang, Hui Gou, Sanrong Wang, Jiang Zhu, Si Tian, and Lehua Yu Copyright © 2016 Yuan Jiang et al. All rights reserved. The Therapeutic Potential of Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) Diterpenes for Alzheimer’s Disease Thu, 28 Jan 2016 09:09:00 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/2680409/ Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis L.) is one of the most economically important species of the family Lamiaceae. Native to the Mediterranean region, the plant is now widely distributed all over the world mainly due to its culinary, medicinal, and commercial uses including in the fragrance and food industries. Among the most important group of compounds isolated from the plant are the abietane-type phenolic diterpenes that account for most of the antioxidant and many pharmacological activities of the plant. Rosemary diterpenes have also been shown in recent years to inhibit neuronal cell death induced by a variety of agents both in vitro and in vivo. The therapeutic potential of these compounds for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is reviewed in this communication by giving special attention to the chemistry of the compounds along with the various pharmacological targets of the disease. The multifunctional nature of the compounds from the general antioxidant-mediated neuronal protection to other specific mechanisms including brain inflammation and amyloid beta (Aβ) formation, polymerisation, and pathologies is discussed. Solomon Habtemariam Copyright © 2016 Solomon Habtemariam. All rights reserved. Preclinical Models for Investigation of Herbal Medicines in Liver Diseases: Update and Perspective Thu, 28 Jan 2016 07:59:31 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/4750163/ Liver disease results from a dynamic pathological process associated with cellular and genetic alterations, which may progress stepwise to liver dysfunction. Commonly, liver disease begins with hepatocyte injury, followed by persistent episodes of cellular regeneration, inflammation, and hepatocyte death that may ultimately lead to nonreversible liver failure. For centuries, herbal remedies have been used for a variety of liver diseases and recent studies have identified the active compounds that may interact with liver disease-associated targets. Further study on the herbal remedies may lead to the formulation of next generation medicines with hepatoprotective, antifibrotic, and anticancer properties. Still, the pharmacological actions of vast majority of herbal remedies remain unknown; thus, extensive preclinical studies are important. In this review, we summarize progress made over the last five years of the most commonly used preclinical models of liver diseases that are used to screen for curative herbal medicines for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, liver fibrosis/cirrhosis, and liver. We also summarize the proposed mechanisms associated with the observed liver-protective, antifibrotic, and anticancer actions of several promising herbal medicines and discuss the challenges faced in this research field. Hor-Yue Tan, Serban San-Marina, Ning Wang, Ming Hong, Sha Li, Lei Li, Fan Cheung, Xiao-Yan Wen, and Yibin Feng Copyright © 2016 Hor-Yue Tan et al. All rights reserved. Antibacterial and Anti-Inflammatory Activities of Physalis Alkekengi var. franchetii and Its Main Constituents Wed, 27 Jan 2016 13:13:36 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/4359394/ This study was designed to determine whether the 50% EtOH fraction from AB-8 macroporous resin fractionation of a 70% EtOH extract of P. Alkekengi (50-EFP) has antibacterial and/or anti-inflammatory activity both in vivo and in vitro and to investigate the mechanism of 50-EFP anti-inflammatory activity. Additionally, this study sought to define the chemical composition of 50-EFP. Results indicated that 50-EFP showed significant antibacterial activity in vitro and efficacy in vivo. Moreover, 50-EFP significantly reduced nitric oxide (NO), prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), interleukin 1 (IL-1), and interleukin 6 (IL-6) production in lipopolysaccharide- (LPS-) stimulated THP-1 cells. Nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) (examined at the protein level) in THP-1 cells were suppressed by 50-EFP, which inhibited nuclear translocation of p65. Consistent with this anti-inflammatory activity in vitro, 50-EFP reduced inflammation in both animal models. Finally, seventeen compounds (8 physalins and 9 flavones) were isolated as major components of 50-EFP. Our data demonstrate that 50-EFP has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory activities both in vitro and in vivo. The anti-inflammatory effect appears to occur, at least in part, through the inhibition of nuclear translocation of p65. Moreover, physalins and flavones are probably the active components in 50-EFP that exert antibacterial and anti-inflammatory activities. Zunpeng Shu, Na Xing, Qiuhong Wang, Xinli Li, Bingqing Xu, Zhenyu Li, and Haixue Kuang Copyright © 2016 Zunpeng Shu et al. All rights reserved. Effects of Huang Bai (Phellodendri Cortex) and Three Other Herbs on GnRH and GH Levels in GT1–7 and GH3 Cells Tue, 26 Jan 2016 13:03:52 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/9389028/ The present study was to evaluate the effects of Huang Bai, Zhi Mu, Mai Ya, and Xia Ku Cao on hormone using the GT1–7 and GH3 cells. The GT1–7 and GH3 cell lines were incubated with DW; DMSO; and 30, 100, or 300 μg/mL of one of the four extract solutions in serum-free media for 24 hours. The MTT assay was performed to determine the cytotoxicity of the four herbs. The GT1–7 and GH3 cells were incubated in DW, estradiol (GT1–7 only), or noncytotoxic herb solutions in serum-free medium for 24 hours. A quantitative RT-PCR and western blot were performed to measure the GnRH expression in GT1–7 cells and GH expression in GH3 cells. Huang Bai, Zhi Mu, Xia Ku Cao, and Mai Ya inhibited the GnRH mRNA expression in GT1–7 cells, whereas Huang Bai enhanced GH mRNA expression in GH3 cells. Additionally, Xia Ku Cao inhibited GnRH protein expression in GT1–7 cells and Huang Bai promoted GH protein expression in GH3 cells. The findings suggest that Huang Bai can delay puberty by inhibiting GnRH synthesis in the hypothalamus while also accelerating growth by promoting GH synthesis and secretion in the pituitary. Sun Haeng Lee, Sung Chul Kwak, Dong Kwan Kim, Sang Woug Park, Hyun Soo Kim, Young-Sik Kim, Donghun Lee, Ju Won Lee, Chang Gon Lee, Hae Kyung Lee, Sung-Min Cho, Yu Jeong Shin, Jin Yong Lee, Hocheol Kim, and Gyu Tae Chang Copyright © 2016 Sun Haeng Lee et al. All rights reserved. Stachytarpheta jamaicensis (L.) Vahl: From Traditional Usage to Pharmacological Evidence Tue, 26 Jan 2016 11:05:01 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/7842340/ Introduction. Stachytarpheta jamaicensis (L.) Vahl belongs to the family of Verbenaceae and is commonly known as Gervao, Brazilian tea, verbena cimarrona, rooter comb, or blue porter weed. It is one of the important plants with high medicinal and nutraceutical benefits. S. jamaicensis contains various medicinal properties in traditional and folk medicinal systems, with cures for several diseases. Objective. The objective of this review paper is to collect information concerning the morphology, distribution, traditional usage, phytochemical compositions, biological activities, and safety data of S. jamaicensis. Materials and Methods. The information was obtained from literature search through electronic databases such as PubMed and Google Scholar on S. jamaicensis. Results and Conclusion. The high medicinal properties of this plant, for instance, antimicrobial and antifungal effect as the main activities, but verbascoside as the main active chemical component, make it a valuable source of the medicinal compound. This review paper summarizes all information concerning the morphology, distribution, traditional usage, phytochemical compositions, pharmacological activities, and toxicological studies of S. jamaicensis. Pearl Majorie Liew and Yoke Keong Yong Copyright © 2016 Pearl Majorie Liew and Yoke Keong Yong. All rights reserved. A Bioactivity-Based Method for Screening, Identification of Lipase Inhibitors, and Clarifying the Effects of Processing Time on Lipase Inhibitory Activity of Polygonum Multiflorum Tue, 26 Jan 2016 06:25:32 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/5965067/ Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) has been used for the treatment of many complex diseases. However, the bioactive components are always undefined. In this study, a bioactivity-based method was developed and validated to screen lipase inhibitors and evaluate the effects of processing on the lipase inhibitory activity of TCM by ultrahigh performance liquid chromatography coupled with quadrupole-time-of-flight mass spectrometry and fraction collector (UHPLC/Q-TOF-MS-FC). The results showed that both Polygonum multiflorum and processed P. multiflorum extracts had inhibitory effect against lipase with IC50 values of 38.84 μg/mL and 190.6 μg/mL, respectively. Stilbenes, phenolic acid, flavonoids, and anthraquinones were considered to be the potential lipase inhibitors. Eleven potential lipase inhibitors were simultaneously determined by UHPLC. Principal component analysis (PCA) was employed in exploring the effects of processing time on lipase inhibitory activity of P. multiflorum. Compared with conventional methods, a bioactivity-based method could quantitatively analyze lipase inhibitory activity of individual constituent and provide the total lipase inhibitory activity of the samples. The results demonstrated that the activity integrated UHPLC/Q-TOF-MS-FC method was an effective and powerful tool for screening and identifying lipase inhibitors from traditional Chinese medicines. Yan-xu Chang, Ai-hua Ge, Yan Jiang, John Teye Azietaku, Jin Li, and Xiu-mei Gao Copyright © 2016 Yan-xu Chang et al. All rights reserved. Glycyrrhizic Acid Attenuates Sepsis-Induced Acute Kidney Injury by Inhibiting NF-κB Signaling Pathway Sun, 24 Jan 2016 11:16:55 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/8219287/ Glycyrrhizic acid (GA) is a major active ingredient in licorice. In our study, the effects of GA on acute kidney injury (AKI) in rats and its underlying molecular mechanisms were investigated. The sepsis model was produced by caecal ligation and puncture (CLP) in rats. The molecular and histological experiments were performed in the kidney tissues and serum samples of rats. According to the results obtained, GA alleviated sepsis-induced AKI by improving the pathological changes, decreasing the levels of blood urea nitrogen (BUN), creatinine (Cre), and increasing the survival rate of rats with AKI significantly. The production of inflammatory cytokines, such as TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-6, was markedly inhibited by GA. Moreover, treatment with GA inhibited the production of nitric oxide (NO) and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and expression levels of induced nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) in kidney tissues. Furtherly, the apoptosis in kidney tissue induced by AKI was suppressed by GA. Finally, GA could inhibit the activation of NF-κB signaling pathway. Our study suggests that GA alleviates sepsis-induced AKI by inhibiting the NF-κB signaling pathway, which provides a strong evidence for a new approach for treating sepsis-induced AKI. Hongyu Zhao, Min Zhao, Yu Wang, Fengchun Li, and Zhigang Zhang Copyright © 2016 Hongyu Zhao et al. All rights reserved. Estimation of Bioactive Compound, Maslinic Acid by HPTLC, and Evaluation of Hepatoprotective Activity on Fruit Pulp of Ziziphus jujuba Mill. Cultivars in India Thu, 21 Jan 2016 09:31:15 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/4758734/ Fruits of Ziziphus jujuba Mill. (family: Rhamnaceae), known as Indian jujube or “Ber,” are of potential nutritional and medicinal value. The objectives of the present study were to estimate bioactive compound maslinic acid by HPTLC method and to evaluate in vitro antioxidant and hepatoprotective activity of eight cultivars of Indian jujube. Maslinic acid and the fruit pulp of various cultivars of Indian jujube, namely, Gola, Sannur, Umaran, Mehrun, and Chhuhara, exhibited significantly high antioxidant and hepatoprotective activity. HPTLC-densitometric method was developed for quantification of maslinic acid from fruits of Indian jujube cultivars. The trend of occurrence of maslinic acid in fruits pulp extracts was as follows: Gola > Sannur > Umaran > Mehrun > Chhuhara > Wild > Kadaka > Apple. A significant correlation was shown by maslinic acid content and prevention of oxidative stress induced by CCl4 in liver slice culture cell treated with extract. Maslinic acid along with its other phytoconstituents like phenols, flavonoids, and ascorbic acid may act as a possible therapeutic agent for preventing hepatotoxicity caused by oxidative stress generated due to the prooxidants like CCl4. This is the first report of fruit pulp extracts of Z. jujube cultivars in India and maslinic acid preventing CCl4 induced damage in liver slice culture cell of mice. Anagha Rajopadhye and Anuradha S. Upadhye Copyright © 2016 Anagha Rajopadhye and Anuradha S. Upadhye. All rights reserved. The Score Model Containing Chinese Medicine Syndrome Element of Blood Stasis Presented a Better Performance Compared to APRI and FIB-4 in Diagnosing Advanced Fibrosis in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis B Wed, 20 Jan 2016 16:09:43 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/3743427/ This study aims to explore a useful noninvasive assessment containing TCM syndrome elements for liver fibrosis in CHB patients. The demographic, clinical, and pathological data were retrospectively collected from 709 CHB patients who had ALT less than 2 times the upper limit of normal from April 2009 to October 2012. Logistical regression and area under receiver-operator curve (AUROC) were used to determine the diagnostic performances of simple tests for advanced fibrosis (Scheuer stage, F ≥ 3). Results showed that the most common TCM syndrome element observed in this CHB population was dampness and Qi stagnation, followed by blood stasis, by heat, and less by Qi deficiency and Yin deficiency. The logistical regression analysis identified AST ≥ 35 IU/L, PLT ≤ 161 × 109/L, and TCM syndrome element of blood stasis as the independent risk factors for advanced fibrosis. Therefore, a score model containing these three factors was established and tested. The score model containing blood stasis resulted in a higher AUC (AUC = 0.936) compared with APRI (AUC = 0.731) and FIB-4 (AUC = 0.709). The study suggested that the score model containing TCM syndrome element of blood stasis could be used as a useful diagnostic tool for advanced fibrosis in CHB patients and presented a better performance compared to APRI and FIB-4. Xiao-Ling Chi, Mei-Jie Shi, Huan-Ming Xiao, Yu-Bao Xie, and Gao-Shu Cai Copyright © 2016 Xiao-Ling Chi et al. All rights reserved. Electroacupuncture Reduces Weight Gain Induced by Rosiglitazone through PPARγ and Leptin Receptor in CNS Wed, 20 Jan 2016 16:09:24 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/8098561/ We investigate the effect of electroacupuncture (EA) on protecting the weight gain side effect of rosiglitazone (RSG) in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) rats and its possible mechanism in central nervous system (CNS). Our study showed that RSG (5 mg/kg) significantly increased the body weight and food intake of the T2DM rats. After six-week treatment with RSG combined with EA, body weight, food intake, and the ratio of IWAT to body weight decreased significantly, whereas the ratio of BAT to body weight increased markedly. HE staining indicated that the T2DM-RSG rats had increased size of adipocytes in their IWAT, but EA treatment reduced the size of adipocytes. EA effectively reduced the lipid contents without affecting the antidiabetic effect of RSG. Furthermore, we noticed that the expression of PPARγ gene in hypothalamus was reduced by EA, while the expressions of leptin receptor and signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) were increased. Our results suggest that EA is an effective approach for inhibiting weight gain in T2DM rats treated by RSG. The possible mechanism might be through increased levels of leptin receptor and STAT3 and decreased PPARγ expression, by which food intake of the rats was reduced and RSG-induced weight gain was inhibited. Xinyue Jing, Chen Ou, Hui Chen, Tianlin Wang, Bin Xu, Shengfeng Lu, and Bing-Mei Zhu Copyright © 2016 Xinyue Jing et al. All rights reserved. Corrigendum to “Effects of a Mindfulness Meditation Course on Learning and Cognitive Performance among University Students in Taiwan” Wed, 20 Jan 2016 09:20:22 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/5905180/ Hoi-Ching Ho, Malcolm Koo, Tsung-Huang Tsai, and Chiu-Yuan Chen Copyright © 2016 Hoi-Ching Ho et al. All rights reserved. Antiobesity Effects of Unripe Rubus coreanus Miquel and Its Constituents: An In Vitro and In Vivo Characterization of the Underlying Mechanism Tue, 19 Jan 2016 13:44:54 +0000 http://www.hindawi.com/journals/ecam/2016/4357656/ Background. The objective of the present study was to perform a bioguided fractionation of unripe Rubus coreanus Miquel (uRC) and evaluate the lipid accumulation system involvement in its antiobesity activity as well as study the uRC mechanism of action. Results. After the fractionation, the BuOH fraction of uRC (uRCB) was the most active fraction, suppressing the differentiation of 3T3-L1 adipocytes in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, after an oral administration for 8 weeks in HFD-induced obese mice, uRCB (10 and 50 mg/kg/day) produced a significant decrease in body weight, food efficiency ratio, adipose tissue weight and LDL-cholesterol, serum glucose, TC, and TG levels. Similarly, uRCB significantly suppressed the elevated mRNA levels of PPARγ in the adipose tissue in vivo. Next, we investigated the antiobesity effects of ellagic acid, erycibelline, 5-hydroxy-2-pyridinemethanol, m-hydroxyphenylglycine, and 4-hydroxycoumarin isolated from uRCB. Without affecting cell viability, five bioactive compounds decreased the lipid accumulation in the 3T3-L1 cells and the mRNA expression levels of key adipogenic genes such as PPARγ, C/EBPα, SREBP-1c, ACC, and FAS. Conclusion. These results suggest that uRC and its five bioactive compounds may be a useful therapeutic agent for body weight control by downregulating adipogenesis and lipogenesis. Dool-Ri Oh, Yujin Kim, Eun-jin Choi, Hunmi-Lee, Myung-A Jung, Donghyuck Bae, Ara Jo, Young Ran Kim, and Sunoh Kim Copyright © 2016 Dool-Ri Oh et al. All rights reserved.