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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2017, Article ID 2473431, 12 pages
Research Article

Kidney-Replenishing Herb Induces SOCS-3 Expression via ERK/MAPK Pathway and Improves Growth of the First-Trimester Human Trophoblast Cells

1Shanghai Jiao Tong University Affiliated Sixth People’s Hospital, Shanghai 200233, China
2Affiliated Hospital of Nantong University, Nantong 226001, China
3The Hospital of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Shanghai 200011, China

Correspondence should be addressed to Chang-ying Xing; moc.361@8gniygnahcgnix

Received 9 February 2017; Revised 18 July 2017; Accepted 2 August 2017; Published 28 September 2017

Academic Editor: Kuang C. Lai

Copyright © 2017 Chang-ying Xing 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.


Kidney-replenishing herb is a traditional medicine formula in China which has been widely used for clinical treatment of recurrent miscarriage. Our previous study showed that Kidney-replenishing herb could promote proliferation and inhibit apoptosis of the human first-trimester trophoblasts. In the present study, we further explored the potential mechanism and signal pathway of Kidney-replenishing herb on human trophoblast cells. Our research showed that Kidney-replenishing herb stimulated proliferation and reduced apoptosis of human trophoblast cells in vitro, and this appeared to be positive correlation with SOCS-3 transcription, suggesting that Kidney-replenishing herb regulated biological functions of human trophoblast cells by inducing SCOS-3 expression. Furthermore, the Kidney-replenishing herb treatment stimulated the phosphorylation of ERK1/2, and blocking the signaling pathway by mitogen-activated protein MAPK (MEK) inhibitor, U0126, inhibited Kidney-replenishing herb-induced SOCS-3 transcription, depressed proliferation, and promoted apoptosis of human trophoblasts. Kidney-replenishing herbs still induced ERK1/2 phosphorylation after SOCS-3 siRNA silence. Overexpression of SOCS-3 stimulated the proliferation of trophoblast. These findings suggest that SOCS-3 expression is induced by Kidney-replenishing herbs via activation of MAPK pathways, and this may possibly be involved in promoting human trophoblast cells growth which is contributed to embryo development.