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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2016, Article ID 6356871, 14 pages
Research Article

Xianfanghuomingyin, a Chinese Compound Medicine, Modulates the Proliferation and Differentiation of T Lymphocyte in a Collagen-Induced Arthritis Mouse Model

1Key Laboratory of Chinese Internal Medicine of Ministry of Education and Beijing, Dongzhimen Hospital, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing, China
2School of Preclinical Medicine, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing, China
3Department of Rheumatology, Dongzhimen Hospital, Beijing University of Chinese Medicine, Beijing, China

Received 5 May 2016; Revised 17 July 2016; Accepted 26 July 2016

Academic Editor: Young-Su Yi

Copyright © 2016 Bo Nie 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.


In traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), xianfanghuomingyin (XFHM) is used to treat autoimmune diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Here, we studied the mechanisms underlying its treatment effects, especially its anti-inflammatory effects in a collagen-induced arthritis (CIA) mouse model. We found that cartilage destruction and pannus formation were alleviated by treatment with XFHM. The abnormal differentiation of Th1 and Th17 cells was downregulated significantly by XFHM, and Th2 and Treg cells were upregulated. Moreover, the expression levels of specific cytokines and transcription factors related to Th1 cells (interferon γ [IFNγ], T-bet) and Th17 cells (interleukin- [IL-] 17) and the nuclear receptor retinoic acid receptor-related orphan receptor-gamma (RORγ) were downregulated. Serum IL-4 and GATA-3, which contribute to Th2 cells differentiation, increased significantly after XFHM administration. These results indicate that XFHM can restore the balance of T lymphocytes and reestablish the immunological tolerance to inhibit autoinflammatory disorder of RA. Taken together, XFHM can be used as a complementary or alternative traditional medicine to treat RA.