Anti-Inflammatory and Immune-Regulatory Effects of Subcutaneous Perillae fructus Extract Injections on OVA-Induced Asthma in Mice
Perillae fructus (perilla seed) is a traditional medicinal herb used to treat bronchial asthma in Oriental medical clinics. ST36 is one of the most widely used acupuncture points, particularly for immune system regulation. Injection of an herbal extract into an acupuncture point (herbal acupuncture) is a therapeutic technique combining both acupuncture and herbal treatment. Perillae fructus extract was injected subcutaneously (Perillae fructus herbal acupuncture; PF-HA) at acupoint ST36 of OVA-induced asthmatic mice. The lung weight, bronchoalveolar fluid (BALF) cell count, the number of CCR3+, CD11b+, CD4+ and CD3e+/CD69+ cells in the lung, and the level of IgE, IL-4, IL-5 and IL-13 in BALF and serum were then measured. RT-PCR was used to measure the mRNA expression of IL-4, IL-5, IL-13 and TNF-α in the lung. Lung sections were analyzed histologically. PF-HA significantly reduced lung weight, the number of inflammatory cells in the lung and BALF, the levels of IgE and Th2 cytokines in BALF and serum, mRNA expression of Th2 cytokines in the lung, and pathological changes in lung tissue. Our results suggest that PF-HA may have an anti-inflammatory and immune-regulatory effect on bronchial allergic asthma by restoring the Th1/Th2 imbalance in the immune system and suppressing eosinophilic inflammation in airways.