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Mediators of Inflammation
Volume 2016, Article ID 2684321, 8 pages
Research Article

Protective Effects of Dracocephalum heterophyllum in ConA-Induced Acute Hepatitis

1Shenzhen Institutes of Advanced Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shenzhen 518055, China
2Institute of Military Veterinary Medicine, Academy of Military Medical Science, Changchun 130122, China
3Northwest Plateau Institute of Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xining 810001, China

Received 8 March 2016; Accepted 29 May 2016

Academic Editor: Lawrence Cohen

Copyright © 2016 Wei Zheng 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.


Dracocephalum heterophyllum (DH) is a Chinese herbal medicine used in treating hepatitis. However, the protective effects and pharmacological mechanisms of DH in hepatitis are unknown. In this study, we found that pretreatment with DH extract significantly ameliorated liver injury and suppressed the production of inflammatory cytokines, including tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α) and interferon-γ (IFN-γ) in Concanavalin A- (ConA-) induced hepatitis (CIH). DH recruited more CD11b+ Gr1+ myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs) to the liver and suppressed infiltration of macrophages (Kupffer cells) in the liver. The present work explores DH as an effective hepatoprotective medicine to inhibit inflammation and liver injury caused by hepatitis.