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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2012, Article ID 498467, 10 pages
Research Article

It Is Not Just Folklore: The Aqueous Extract of Mung Bean Coat Is Protective against Sepsis

1Laboratory of Emergency Medicine, The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, 350 Community Drive, Manhasset, NY 11030, USA
2Department of Emergency Medicine, North Shore University Hospital, The Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine at the Hofstra University, Manhasset, NY 11030, USA

Received 30 July 2012; Accepted 2 September 2012

Academic Editor: Andreas Sandner-Kiesling

Copyright © 2012 Shu Zhu 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.


Mung bean (Vigna Radiata) has been traditionally used in China both as nutritional food and herbal medicine against a number of inflammatory conditions since the 1050s. A nucleosomal protein, HMGB1, has recently been established as a late mediator of lethal systemic inflammation with a relatively wider therapeutic window for pharmacological interventions. Here we explored the HMGB1-inhibiting capacity and therapeutic potential of mung bean coat (MBC) extract in vitro and in vivo. We found that MBC extract dose-dependently attenuated LPS-induced release of HMGB1 and several chemokines in macrophage cultures. Oral administration of MBC extract significantly increased animal survival rates from 29.4% (in saline group, mice) to 70% (in experimental MBC extract group, mice, ). In vitro, MBC extract stimulated HMGB1 protein aggregation and facilitated both the formation of microtubule-associatedprotein-1-light-chain-3-(LC3-)containing cytoplasmic vesicles, and the production of LC3-II in macrophage cultures. Consequently, MBC extract treatment led to reduction of cellular HMGB1 levels in macrophage cultures, which was impaired by coaddition of two autophagy inhibitors (bafilomycin A1 and 3-methyladenine). Conclusion. MBC extract is protective against lethal sepsis possibly by stimulating autophagic HMGB1 degradation.