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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2016, Article ID 7603746, 9 pages
Research Article

Asparagus cochinchinensis Extract Alleviates Metal Ion-Induced Gut Injury in Drosophila: An In Silico Analysis of Potential Active Constituents

College of Life Science, Northeast Forestry University, Harbin 150040, China

Received 15 December 2015; Revised 24 February 2016; Accepted 13 March 2016

Academic Editor: Ghee T. Tan

Copyright © 2016 Weiyu Zhang and Li Hua Jin. 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.


Metal ions and sulfate are components of atmospheric pollutants that have diverse ways of entering the human body. We used Drosophila as a model to investigate the effect of Asparagus cochinchinensis (A. cochinchinensis) extracts on the gut and characterized gut homeostasis following the ingestion of metal ions (copper, zinc, and aluminum). In this study, we found that the aqueous A. cochinchinensis extract increased the survival rate, decreased epithelial cell death, and attenuated metal ion-induced gut morphological changes in flies following chronic exposure to metal ions. In addition, we screened out, by network pharmacology, six natural products (NPs) that could serve as putative active components of A. cochinchinensis that prevented gut injury. Altogether, the results of our study provide evidence that A. cochinchinensis might be an effective phytomedicine for the treatment of metal ion-induced gut injury.