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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 390890, 10 pages
Research Article

Natural Antioxidant-Isoliquiritigenin Ameliorates Contractile Dysfunction of Hypoxic Cardiomyocytes via AMPK Signaling Pathway

1Institute of Physiology, School of Basic Medicine Sciences, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000, China
2Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, University at Buffalo-SUNY University of New York, Buffalo, NY 14214, USA
3Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Guangdong Cardiovascular Institute, Guangdong General Hospital, Guangdong Academy of Medical Sciences, Guangzhou 510080, China
4Department of Emergency, Gansu Provincial Hospital, Lanzhou 730000, China
5Department of Internal Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520, USA

Received 16 July 2013; Accepted 14 August 2013

Academic Editor: Fatih Arslan

Copyright © 2013 Xiaoyu Zhang 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.


Isoliquiritigenin (ISL), a simple chalcone-type flavonoid, is derived from licorice compounds and is mainly present in foods, beverages, and tobacco. Reactive oxygen species (ROS) is a critical factor involved in modulating cardiac stress response signaling during ischemia and reperfusion. We hypothesize that ISL as a natural antioxidant may protect heart against ischemic injury via modulating cellular redox status and regulating cardioprotective signaling pathways. The fluorescent probe H2DCFDA was used to measure the level of intracellular ROS. The glucose uptake was determined by 2-deoxy-D-glucose-3H accumulation. The IonOptix System measured the contractile function of isolated cardiomyocytes. The results demonstrated that ISL treatment markedly ameliorated cardiomyocytes contractile dysfunction caused by hypoxia. ISL significantly stimulated cardioprotective signaling, AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) signaling pathways. The ROS fluorescent probe H2DCFDA determination indicated that ISL significantly reduced cardiac ROS level during hypoxia/reoxygenation. Moreover, ISL reduced the mitochondrial potential ( ) of isolated mouse cardiomyocytes. Taken together, ISL as a natural antioxidant demonstrated the cardioprotection against ischemic injury that may attribute to the activation of AMPK and ERK signaling pathways and balance of cellular redox status.