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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012, Article ID 132859, 13 pages
Research Article

Involvement of Heme Oxygenase-1 Participates in Anti-Inflammatory and Analgesic Effects of Aqueous Extract of Hibiscus taiwanensis

1School of Chinese Pharmaceutical Sciences and Chinese Medicine Resources, College of Pharmacy, China Medical University, Taichung 404, Taiwan
2Department of Health and Nutrition Biotechnology, Asia University, Taichung 413, Taiwan
3Nursing Department, Hsin Sheng College of Medical Care and Management, Taoyuan 325, Taiwan
4Graduate Institute of Pharmacognosy, Taipei Medical University, Taipei 250, Taiwan
5School of Pharmacy, College of Pharmacy, China Medical University, Taichung 404, Taiwan

Received 1 March 2012; Revised 16 April 2012; Accepted 29 April 2012

Academic Editor: Seung-Heon Hong

Copyright © 2012 Shu-Ling Liu 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.


Anti-inflammatory effects of the aqueous extract of Hibiscus taiwanensis (AHT) were used in lipopolysaccharide (LPS-)stimulated mouse macrophage RAW264.7 cells and carrageenan (Carr-)induced mouse paw edema model. When RAW264.7 macrophages were treated with AHT together with LPS, a concentration-dependent inhibition of nitric oxide (NO), tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α), and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) levels productions were detected. Western blotting revealed that AHT blocked protein expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), and elevated heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), significantly. In the animal test, AHT decreased the paw edema at the 4th and the 5th h after Carr administration, and it increased the activities of catalase (CAT), superoxide dismutase (SOD), and glutathione peroxidase (GPx) in the paw tissue. We also demonstrated AHT decreased the NO, TNF-α, and PGE2 levels on the serum level at the 5th h after the Carr injection. Western blotting revealed that AHT decreased Carr-induced iNOS, and COX-2, and increased HO-1 expressions at the 5th h in the edema paw. These findings demonstrated that AHT has excellent anti-inflammatory activities in vitro and in vivo and thus it has great potential to be used as a source for natural health products.