Cordyceps sinensis (C. sinensis) has long been considered to be an herbal medicine and has been used in the treatment of various inflammatory diseases. The present study examined the cytoprotective properties of C. sinensis on D(+)-galactosamine (GalN)/lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced fulminant hepatic failure. Mice were randomly assigned into control, GalN/LPS, CS 20 mg and CS 40 mg groups (C. sinensis, oral gavage, five days/week, four weeks). After receiving saline or C. sinensis, mice were intraperitoneally given GalN (800 mg/kg)/LPS (10 μg/kg). The effects of C. sinensis on TNF-α, IL-10, AST, NO, SOD, and apoptoticrelated proteins after the onset of endotoxin intoxication were determined. Data demonstrated that GalN/LPS increased hepatocyte degeneration, circulating AST, TNF-α, IL-10, and hepatic apoptosis and caspase activity. C. sinensis pre-treatment reduced AST, TNF-α, and NO and increased IL-10 and SOD in GalN/LPS induced fulminant hepatic failure. C. sinensis attenuated the apoptosis of hepatocytes, as evidenced by the TUNEL and capase-3, 6 activity analyses. In summary, C. sinensis alleviates GalN/LPS-induced liver injury by modulating the cytokine response and inhibiting apoptosis. C. sinensis could be used as a potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-apoptotic agent to reduce liver injury after the onset of sepsis.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Complementary and alternative medicine