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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2008 3:00 am
by gibbledygook
<shortened url> another tack skullcap looks good for superantigen Tcell inhibition:
1: FEBS Lett. 2001 Jun 29;500(1-2):52-5. Links
The flavonoid baicalin inhibits superantigen-induced inflammatory cytokines and chemokines.Krakauer T, Li BQ, Young HA.
Department of Immunology and Molecular Biology, United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases, 1425 Porter Street, Fort Detrick, Frederick, MD 21702-5011, USA.

Excessive release of proinflammatory cytokines mediates the toxic effect of superantigenic staphylococcal exotoxins (SE). Baicalin, a flavone isolated from the Chinese herb Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi and used in China to treat infectious diseases, inhibited SE-stimulated T-cell proliferation (by 98%) and production of interleukin 1beta, interleukin 6, tumor necrosis factor, interferon gamma, monocyte chemotactic protein 1, macrophage inflammatory protein (MIP)-1alpha, and MIP-1beta mRNA and protein by human peripheral blood mononuclear cells. These data suggest that baicalin may be therapeutically useful for mitigating the pathogenic effects of SE by inhibiting the signaling pathways activated by superantigens.
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1: Biomed Pharmacother. 2008 Feb 27. [Epub ahead of print] Links
Up-regulation of Toll-like receptor 4 was suppressed by emodin and baicalin in the setting of acute pancreatitis.Li Z, Xia X, Zhang S, Zhang A, Bo W, Zhou R.
Department of General Surgery, the Second Affiliated Hospital of Medical School, Xi'an Jiaotong University, No.157, Xiwu Road, Xi'an, Shaanxi Province 710004, PR China.

Acute pancreatitis (AP) activates the systemic inflammatory response and is potentially lethal. Recent studies demonstrated that pancreatic enzymes could induce cytokine expression via Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) signal pathway, indicating a possible role of TLR4 in local pancreatic injury and systemic inflammatory response. Emodin, an anthraquinone derivative from Radix et Rhizoma Rhei, and baicalin, a flavone from Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi, both have been reported to possess anti-inflammatory activities. In present study, we investigated the combined effect of emodin and baicalin on pancreatic damage and pancreatitis associated lung injury, as well as tissue TLR4 expression in the setting of AP. The results showed that combination of emodin and baicalin significantly reduced serum amylase, tumor necrosis factor-alpha and interleukin-6, attenuated pancreatic and pulmonary damage, also suppressed TLR4 expression in pancreas and lung. It could be speculated that amelioration of pancreatic and pulmonary damage by emodin and baicalin might contribute, in part at least, to the suppression of TLR4 expression. The present study provides beneficial evidence as to simultaneous treatment for AP, and also suggests an important role of TLR4 in pathophysiology of AP.
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what's tlr4?
1: J Clin Immunol. 2008 May 8. [Epub ahead of print] Links
15-Deoxy-Delta(12,14)-Prostaglandin J(2) and Curcumin Modulate the Expression of Toll-like Receptors 4 and 9 in Autoimmune T Lymphocyte.Chearwae W, Bright JJ.
Neuroscience Research Laboratory, Methodist Research Institute at Clarian Health, 1800 North Capitol Avenue, Noyes Building E-504C, Indianapolis, IN, 46202, USA.

INTRODUCTION: Experimental allergic encephalomyelitis (EAE) is a T cell-mediated autoimmune disease model for multiple sclerosis (MS). We have shown earlier that 15-deoxy-Delta(12,14)-prostaglandin J(2) (15d-PGJ(2)) and curcumin ameliorate EAE by modulating inflammatory signaling pathways in T lymphocytes. Toll-like receptors (TLRs), expressed primarily in innate immune cells, play critical roles in the pathogenesis of EAE. T lymphocytes also express TLRs and function as costimulatory receptors to upregulate proliferation and cytokine production in response to specific agonists. DISCUSSION: In this study, we show that naïve CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells express detectable levels of TLR4 and TLR9 and that increase after the induction of EAE in SJL/J and C57BL/6 mice by immunization with PLPp139-151 and MOGp35-55 antigen, respectively. It is interesting to note that in vivo treatment with 15d-PGJ2 or curcumin results in a significant decrease in TLR4 and TLR9 expression in CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells in association with the amelioration of EAE. CONCLUSION: Although the exact mechanisms are not known, the modulation of TLR expression in T lymphocytes by 15d-PGJ(2) and curcumin suggests new therapeutic targets in the treatment of T cell-mediated autoimmune diseases.
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1: J Immunol. 2004 Dec 1;173(11):7070-7. Links
TLR4 contributes to disease-inducing mechanisms resulting in central nervous system autoimmune disease.Kerfoot SM, Long EM, Hickey MJ, Andonegui G, Lapointe BM, Zanardo RC, Bonder C, James WG, Robbins SM, Kubes P.
Immunology Research Group, Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Environmental factors strongly influence the development of autoimmune diseases, including multiple sclerosis. Despite this clear association, the mechanisms through which environment mediates its effects on disease are poorly understood. Pertussis toxin (PTX) functions as a surrogate for environmental factors to induce animal models of autoimmunity, such as experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis. Although very little is known about the molecular mechanisms behind its function in disease development, PTX has been hypothesized to facilitate immune cell entry to the CNS by increasing permeability across the blood-brain barrier. Using intravital microscopy of the murine cerebromicrovasculature, we demonstrate that PTX alone induces the recruitment of leukocytes and of active T cells to the CNS. P-selectin expression was induced by PTX, and leukocyte/endothelial interactions could be blocked with a P-selectin-blocking Ab. P-selectin blockade also prevented PTX-induced increase in permeability across the blood-brain barrier. Therefore, permeability is a secondary result of recruitment, rather than the primary mechanism by which PTX induces disease. Most importantly, we show that PTX induces intracellular signals through TLR4, a receptor intimately associated with innate immune mechanisms. We demonstrate that PTX-induced leukocyte recruitment is dependent on TLR4 and give evidence that the disease-inducing mechanisms initiated by PTX are also at least partly dependent on TLR4. We propose that this innate immune pathway is a novel mechanism through which environment can initiate autoimmune disease of the CNS.
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1: Clin Mol Allergy. 2007 Nov 26;5:5. Links
Baicalein inhibits IL-1beta- and TNF-alpha-induced inflammatory cytokine production from human mast cells via regulation of the NF-kappaB pathway.Hsieh CJ, Hall K, Ha T, Li C, Krishnaswamy G, Chi DS.
Departments of Internal Medicine, James H, Quillen College of Medicine, East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, Tennessee 37614, USA.

ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Human mast cells are multifunctional cells capable of a wide variety of inflammatory responses. Baicalein (BAI), isolated from the traditional Chinese herbal medicine Huangqin (Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi), has been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects. We examined its effects and mechanisms on the expression of inflammatory cytokines in an IL-1beta- and TNF-alpha-activated human mast cell line, HMC-1. METHODS: HMC-1 cells were stimulated either with IL-1beta (10 ng/ml) or TNF-alpha (100 U/ml) in the presence or absence of BAI. We assessed the expression of IL-6, IL-8, and MCP-1 by ELISA and RT-PCR, NF-kappaB activation by electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA), and IkappaBalpha activation by Western blot. RESULTS: BAI (1.8 to 30 muM) significantly inhibited production of IL-6, IL-8, and MCP-1 in a dose-dependent manner in IL-1beta-activated HMC-1. BAI (30 muM) also significantly inhibited production of IL-6, IL-8, and MCP-1 in TNF-alpha-activated HMC-1. Inhibitory effects appear to involve the NF-kappaB pathway. BAI inhibited NF-kappaB activation in IL-1beta- and TNF-alpha-activated HMC-1. Furthermore, BAI increased cytoplasmic IkappaBalpha proteins in IL-1beta- and TNF-alpha-activated HMC-1. CONCLUSION: Our results showed that BAI inhibited the production of inflammatory cytokines through inhibition of NF-kappaB activation and IkappaBalpha phosphorylation and degradation in human mast cells. This inhibitory effect of BAI on the expression of inflammatory cytokines suggests its usefulness in the development of novel anti-inflammatory therapies.
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1: Braz J Med Biol Res. 2007 Jul;40(7):1003-10. Links
Baicalin reduces the severity of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.Zeng Y, Song C, Ding X, Ji X, Yi L, Zhu K.
Department of Neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital, Nanjing Medical University, China.

Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi is one of the important medicinal herbs widely used for the treatment of various inflammatory diseases in Asia. Baicalin (BA) is a bioactive anti-inflammatory flavone found abundantly in Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi. To explore the therapeutic potential of BA, we examined the effects of systemic administration of the flavone (5 and 10 mg/kg, ip) on relapsing/remitting experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) induced by proteolipid protein 139-151 in SJL/J mice, an experimental model of multiple sclerosis. The mice treated with PBS or BA at day -1 and for 3 consecutive days were observed daily for clinical signs of disease up to 60 days after immunization. In the PBS-EAE group, neurological scores were: incidence (100%), mean day of onset (8.0 +/- 0.73), peak clinical score (3.0 +/- 0.4), and cumulative disease index (141.8 +/- 19.4). In the BA-EAE group (5 or 10 mg kg(-1) day(-1), respectively), incidence (95 or 90%), mean day of onset (9.0 +/- 0.80 or 9.2 +/- 0.75; P = 0.000), peak clinical score (2.2 +/- 0.3 or 2.0 +/- 0.3; P = 0.000), and cumulative disease index (75.9 +/- 10.1 or 62.9 +/- 8.4; P = 0.000) decreased, accompanied by the histopathological findings (decrease of dense mononuclear infiltration surrounding vascellum) for the spinal cord. Additionally, the in vitro effects of BA (5, 10, and 25 microM) on mononuclear cells collected from popliteal and inguinal lymph nodes of day-10 EAE mice were evaluated using an MTT reduction assay for cell proliferation, and ELISA to measure IFN-gamma and IL-4 cytokines. Compared with the control group, BA caused an increase in IL-4 (EAE-DMSO: 3.56 +/- 0.42 pg/mL vs EAE-BA (5, 10, and 25 microM): 6.03 +/- 1.1, 7.83 +/- 0.65, 10.54 +/- 1.13 pg/mL, respectively; P < 0.001); but inhibited IFN-gamma (EAE-DMSO: 485.76 +/- 25.13 pg/mL vs EAE-BA (5, 10, and 25 microM): 87.08 +/- 9.24, 36.27 +/- 5.44, 19.18 +/- 2.93 pg/mL, respectively; P < 0.001) and the proliferation of mononuclear cells (EAE-DMSO: 0.73 +/- 0.021 vs EAE-BA (5, 10, and 25 microM): 0.41 +/- 0.015, 0.31 +/- 0.018, 0.21 +/- 0.11, respectively; P < 0.001) in a concentration-dependent manner. The results suggest that BA might be effective in the treatment of multiple sclerosis.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 04, 2010 8:03 am
by ikulo
In light of the CCSVI theory, I wanted to revive this post to note that Skullcap may also be used to treat hypoperfusion (which is prevalent in MSers due to possible role of CCSVI).

Neuroprotection by baicalein in ischemic brain injury involves PTEN/AKT pathway.

J. Neurochem. (2010) 10.1111/j.1471-4159.2009.06561.x Abstract Recently more evidences support baicalein (Bai) is neuroprotective in models of ischemic stroke. This study was conducted to determine the molecular mechanisms involved in this effect. Either permanent or transient (2 h) middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) was induced in rats in this study. Permanent MCAO led to larger infarct volumes in contrast to transient MCAO. Only in transient MCAO, Bai administration significantly reduced infarct size. Baicalein also markedly reduced apoptosis in the penumbra of transient MCAO rats. Additionally, oxygen and glucose deprivation (OGD) was used to mimic ischemic insult in primary cultured cortical neurons. A rapid increase in the intracellular reactive oxygen species level and nitrotyrosine formation induced by OGD was counteracted by Bai, which is parallel with attenuated cell injury. The reduction of phosphorylation Akt and glycogen synthase kinase-3beta (GSK3beta) induced by OGD was restored by Bai, which was associated with preserved levels of phosphorylation of PTEN, the phophatase that negatively regulates Akt. As a consequence, Bcl-2/Bcl-xL-associated death protein phosphorylation was increased and the protein level of Bcl-2 in motochondria was maintained, which subsequently antagonize cytochrome c released in cytosol. LY294002 blocked the increase in phospho-AKT evoked by Bai and abolished the associated protective effect. Together, these findings provide evidence that Bai protects neurons against ischemia injury and this neuroprotective effect involves PI3K/Akt and PTEN pathway. PMID: 20050973

Baicalein protects rat brain mitochondria against chronic cerebral hypoperfusion-induced oxidative damage.

This study investigated the effects of baicalein, a natural compound isolated from the root of scutellaria, on cognitive and motor ability impaired by chronic cerebral hypoperfusion in rats, as well as its effects on brain mitochondria. Rats subjected to permanent bilateral common carotid artery occlusion experienced cognitive deficits, oxidative stress and mitochondria dysfunction, which was associated with the elevation of reactive oxygen species level, the decrease of oxidative phosphorylation parameters, the loss of mitochondrial membrane potential, the reduce in Bcl-2/Bax ratio, and the release of cytochrome c. Baicalein alleviated cognitive and motor impairments and decreased mitochondria reactive oxygen species production, in accordance with its improvements on membrane potential level, oxidative phosphorylation process, mitochondrial swelling degree, Bcl-2/Bax ratio and cytochrome c release. These data indicated that baicalein might have therapeutic potential for the treatment of dementia caused by chronic cerebral hypoperfusion, contributed to its protections on brain mitochondrial homeostasis and function.

PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2010 9:14 am
by ikulo
One more tidbit about Skullcap:

J Inorg Biochem. 2009 Mar;103(3):326-32. Epub 2008 Nov 19.
Iron-binding and anti-Fenton properties of baicalein and baicalin.

Perez CA, Wei Y, Guo M.

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth, MA 02747-2300, USA.

Baicalein and baicalin, the major bioactive compounds found in the Chinese herb Scutellaria baicalensis, have been shown to be effective against cancer, bacterial infections and oxidative stress diseases. However, little is known about their mechanisms of action. To probe whether iron homeostasis modulation may play a role in their bioactivity, we have investigated their iron binding characteristics under physiologically relevant conditions. A 2:1 baicalein-ferrous complex was readily formed in 20mM phosphate buffer, pH 7.2, with a binding constant approximately 2-9 x 10(11)M(-2), whereas a 1:1 baicalein-ferric complex was formed, under the same conditions, with an apparent binding constant approximately 1-3 x 10(6)M(-1). Baicalein appears to bind the ferrous ion more strongly than ferrozine, a well known iron(II) chelator. Using (1) H NMR and Zn(2+) and Ga(3+) as probes, the iron-binding site on baicalein was elucidated to be at the O6/O7 oxygen atoms of the A-ring. No binding was observed for baicalin under the same NMR conditions. Furthermore, baicalein strongly inhibits the Fe-promoted Fenton chemistry via a combination of chelation and radical scavenging mechanism while baicalin can provide only partial protection against radical damage. These results indicate that baicalein is a strong iron chelator under physiological conditions and hence may play a vital role in modulating the body's iron homeostasis. Modulation of metal homeostasis and the inhibition of Fenton chemistry may be one of the possible mechanisms for herbal medicine.

PMID: 19108897 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

There are many different types of Skullcap, but this article (and my last post) refer to Scutellaria Baicalensis. I haven't been able to find this type of skullcap in stores, rather most stores carry Scutellaria lateriflora, which is different.

PostPosted: Sat Mar 06, 2010 10:07 am
by gibbledygook
I'm sure you can get baicalensis at
But it's not the cheapest.

Re: Skullcap

PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2013 11:00 am
by leonardo
Inhibition of 12/15-lipoxygenase by baicalein induces microglia PPARβ/δ: a potential therapeutic role for CNS autoimmune disease.
Xu J, Zhang Y, Xiao Y, Ma S, Liu Q, Dang S, Jin M, Shi Y, Wan B, Zhang Y.

1] Shanghai Institute of Immunology, Institutes of Medical Sciences, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China [2] Key Laboratory of Stem Cell Biology, Institute of Health Sciences, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China.

12/15-Lipoxygenase (12/15-LO) is an enzyme that converts polyunsaturated fatty acids into bioactive lipid derivatives. In this study, we showed that inhibition of 12/15-LO by baicalein (BA) significantly attenuated clinical severity of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), an animal model of multiple sclerosis (MS). Inhibited migration of autoimmune T cells into the central nervous system (CNS) by BA treatment could be attributed to reduced activation of microglia, which was indicated by suppressed phagocytosis, and decreased production of proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines in the CNS. We further observed that inhibition of 12/15-LO with BA led to increased expression of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR)β/δ in microglia of EAE mice. This was confirmed in vitro in primary microglia and a microglia cell line, BV2. In addition, we demonstrated that BA did not affect 12/15-LO or 5-lipoxygenase (5-LO) expression in microglia, but significantly decreased 12/15-LO products without influencing the levels of 5-LO metabolites. Moreover, among these compounds only 12/15-LO metabolite 12-hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acid was able to reverse BA-mediated upregulation of PPARβ/δ in BV2 cells. We also showed that inhibition of microglia activation by PPARβ/δ was associated with repressed NF-κB and MAPK activities. Our findings indicate that inhibition of 12/15-LO induces PPARβ/δ, demonstrating important regulatory properties of 12/15-LO in CNS inflammation. This reveals potential therapeutic applications for MS.
PMID: 23559003 [PubMed - in process]