Molecules and cells

Effects of ginsenoside on pacemaker potentials of cultured interstitial cells of Cajal clusters from the small intestine of mice.

PMID 22350744


Ginsenoside, one of the active ingredients of Panax ginseng, has a variety of physiological and pharmacological actions in various organs. However, little is known about the effects of ginsenosides on gastrointestinal (GI) motility. We studied the modulation of pacemaker potentials by ginsenoside in the interstitial cells of Cajal (ICCs) using the whole-cell patch clamp technique in the current clamp mode. Among ginsenosides, we investigated the effects of ginsenoside Rb1, Rg3 and Rf. While externally applied Rb1 and Rg3 had no effects on pacemaker potentials, Rf caused membrane depolarization. The application of flufenamic acid or niflumic acid abolished the generation of pacemaker potentials and inhibited the Rf-induced membrane depolarization. Membrane depolarization induced by Rf was not inhibited by intracellular application of guanosine 5'-[β-thio]diphosphate trilithium salt. Pretreatment with a Ca(2+)-free solution, thapsigargin, a Ca(2+)-ATPase inhibitor of the endoplasmic reticulum, U-73122, a phospholipase C inhibitor, or 2-APB, an IP3 receptor inhibitor, abolished the generation of pacemaker potentials and suppressed Rfinduced actions. However, treatment with chelerythrine and calphostin C, protein kinase C inhibitors, did not block Rf-induced effects on pacemaker potentials. These results suggest that ginsenoside Rf modulates the pacemaker activities of ICCs and thereby regulates intestinal motility.