The anti-inflammatory effect of the Monascus-fermented product monascin on murine macrophages

Tao Huang, Wei Hsuan Hsu, Yu Ying Chang, Tzu Ming Pan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The present study investigated the effect of the Monascus-fermented product, monascin, on inflammation caused by ovalbumin (OVA). Our purpose was to understand the anti-inflammatory mechanism of the monascin. In this study, the murine macrophage RAW 264.7 cells were co-treated with monascin and OVA for 24 hours. The results showed that cytokine expression, including tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-a) and interleukin 6 (IL-6), was obviously decreased. We further examined the expression of the downstream products of the inflammation pathway. Monascin had effectively inhibited the expression of nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), thus decreasing the production of nitric oxide (NO) and prostaglandin E 2 (PGE 2). It also down-regulated the phosphorylation of the c-Jun NH 2-terminal kinase (JNK). These data suggested that monascin may have the potential to be developed as an anti-inflammation drug.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-117
Number of pages7
JournalTaiwanese Journal of Agricultural Chemistry and Food Science
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Jun 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Food Science
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science


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