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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2016, Article ID 5836879, 9 pages
Research Article

Effects of Wutou Decoction on DNA Methylation and Histone Modifications in Rats with Collagen-Induced Arthritis

1Institute of Integrated Traditional Chinese and Western Medicine, Tongji Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, 1095 Jiefang Avenue, Wuhan, Hubei 430030, China
2Department of Nephrology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Zhengzhou University, 1 Jianshe East Road, Zhengzhou, Henan 450052, China
3Hubei University of Chinese Medicine, 1 Huangjiahu West Road, Wuhan, Hubei 430065, China

Received 16 October 2015; Accepted 11 February 2016

Academic Editor: Musa T. Yakubu

Copyright © 2016 Ya-Fei 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.


Background. Wutou decoction (WTD) has been wildly applied in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and experimental arthritis in rats for many years. Epigenetic deregulation is associated with the aetiology of rheumatoid arthritis; however, the effects of WTD on epigenetic changes are unclear. This study is set to explore the effects of WTD on DNA methylation and histone modifications in rats with collagen-induced arthritis (CIA). Methods. The CIA model was established by the stimulation of collagen and adjuvant. The knee synovium was stained with hematoxylin and eosin. The DNA methyltransferase 1 (DNMT1) and methylated CpG binding domain 2 (MBD2) expression of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) were determined by Real-Time PCR. The global DNA histone H3-K4/H3-K27 methylation and total histones H3 and H4 acetylation of PBMCs were detected. Results. Our data demonstrated that the DNMT1 mRNA expression was significantly lowered in group WTD compared to that in group CIA (). The DNA methylation level was significantly reduced in group WTD compared to that in group CIA (). Moreover, H3 acetylation of PBMCs was overexpressed in WTD compared with CIA (). Conclusions. WTD may modulate DNA methylation and histone modifications, functioning as anti-inflammatory potential.