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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 7, Issue 2, Pages 189-195
Original Article

The Anti-Hepatitis B Virus Activity of Boehmeria nivea Extract in HBV-Viremia SCID Mice

1Division of Research and Development, Development Center for Biotechnology, Xizhi City, Taipei County, Taiwan 221, Taiwan
2Department of Life Sciences and Institute of Biotechnology, National Tsing Hua University, Hsinchu, Taiwan 30013, Taiwan
3Department of Bioresources, Da-Yeh University, Changhua, Taiwan 515, Taiwan

Received 30 April 2007; Accepted 5 December 2007

Copyright © 2010 Jia-Ming Chang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Boehmeria nivea extract (BNE) is widely used in southern Taiwan as a folk medicine for hepato-protection and hepatitis treatment. In previous studies, we demonstrated that BNE could reduce the supernatant hepatitis B virus (HBV) DNA in HBV-producing HepG2 2.2.15 cells. In the present study, we established an animal model of HBV viremia and used it to validate the efficacy of BNE in vivo. In this animal model, serum HBV DNA and HBsAg were elevated in accordance with tumor growth. To evaluate the anti-HBV activity of BNE, HBV-viremia mice were built up after one subcutaneous inoculation of HepG2 2.2.15 tumor cells in severe combined immunodeficiency mice over 13 days. The levels of serum HBV DNA were elevated around 105–106 copies per milliliter. Both oral and intraperitoneal administration of BNE were effective at inhibiting the production of HBsAg and HBV DNA, whereas tumor growth was not affected by all test articles. Intraperitoneal administration of BNE appeared to have greater potential to inhibit serum HBV DNA levels compared with oral administration under the same dosage. Notably, reduced natural killer cell activity was also observed after high dosage of BNE administration, and this correlated with reduced serum HBV DNA. In conclusion, BNE exhibited potential anti-HBV activity in an animal model of HBV viremia.