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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013, Article ID 434823, 5 pages
Research Article

Pectinesterase Inhibitor from Jelly Fig (Ficus awkeotsang Makino) Achene Inhibits Surface Antigen Expression by Human Hepatitis B Virus

1Genetics Center, Department of Medical Research, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung 404, Taiwan
2School of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University, Taichung 404, Taiwan
3Graduate Institute of Biostatistics, China Medical University, Taichung 404, Taiwan
4Department of Food Science and Technology, National Taitung Junior College, Taitung 950, Taiwan
5Department of Seafood Science, National Kaohsiung Marine University, Kaohsiung 811, Taiwan
6Department of Radiation Oncology, Mackay Memorial Hospital, 92 Chung San North Road, Section 2, Taipei 104, Taiwan
7Institute of Traditional Medicine, National Yang-Ming University, Taipei 112, Taiwan
8Department and Graduate School of Physical Education, National Taiwan University of Physical Education and Sport, Taichung 404, Taiwan

Received 28 June 2013; Accepted 1 October 2013

Academic Editor: Mohammad Ahmad Al-Shatouri

Copyright © 2013 Yu-Chuen Huang 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.


Pectinesterase inhibitor (PEI) isolated from jelly fig (Ficus awkeotsang Makino) is an edible component of a popular drink consumed in Asia. Hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection is prevalent in Asia, and current treatments for HBV infection need improvement. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of PEI on the surface antigen expression by HBV (HBsAg). Human hepatoma cell lines Hep3B and Huh7 served as in vitro models for assessing the cytotoxicity and HBsAg expression. A culture of primary hepatocytes cultured from mice served as the normal counterpart. Cell viability was measured by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) colorimetric assay. HBsAg expression was evaluated by measuring HBsAg secretion into the culture medium using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The results showed that PEI did not affect the viability of the human hepatoma cell lines or primary mouse hepatocytes. PEI inhibited the expression of HBsAg in hepatoma cell lines harboring endogenous (Hep3B) and integrated (Huh7) HBV genomes in a concentration- and time-dependent manner, thus implicating a universal activity against HBV gene expression. In conclusion, it suggests that PEI from jelly fig inhibits the expression of human HBsAg in host cells without toxic effects on normal primary hepatocytes.