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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2016, Article ID 5362475, 10 pages
Research Article

Effects of Cymbidium Root Ethanol Extract on Atopic Dermatitis

Division of Biological Science and Technology, Yonsei-Fraunhofer Medical Device Laboratory, College of Science and Technology, Yonsei University, Wonju 220-710, Republic of Korea

Received 24 November 2015; Revised 7 January 2016; Accepted 14 January 2016

Academic Editor: Salvatore Chirumbolo

Copyright © 2016 Wan-Joong Kim 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.


Cymbidium has known antibacterial and antiedema activity and has been used as an ingredient in cosmetics and fragrances. The effects of Cymbidium ethanol extract (CYM) on allergic response and the underlying mechanisms of action have not been reported. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine the effect of CYM on allergic responses. Topical application of CYM was effective against immunoglobulin E (IgE)/dinitrophenyl-conjugated bovine serum albumin- (DNP-BSA-) induced degranulation of RBL-2H3 cells and anaphylaxis in ICR mice. An allergic dermatitis-like mouse model was used to evaluate the therapeutic potential of CYM in vivo. Continuous application of 2,4-dinitrochlorobenzene (DNCB) not only induced dermatitis in ICR mice but also aggravated the skin lesioning. However, the application of CYM decreased skin lesion severity, scratching behavior, and IgE levels. In addition, CYM downregulated the expression of the proinflammatory cytokines interleukin- (IL-) 4, IL-13, and tumor necrosis factor- (TNF-) α. Studies of signal transduction pathways showed that CYM suppressed the phosphorylation of spleen tyrosine kinase (Syk), an upstream molecule. It also inhibited the phosphorylation of Akt, phospholipase C- (PLC-) γ, and mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase (MEKK). These results indicate that CYM may be effective in preventing and reducing allergic response and may have therapeutic potential as an antiallergic agent in disorders such as atopic dermatitis.