Experimental and therapeutic medicine

Protective effect of Xingnaojia formulation on rats with brain and liver damage caused by chronic alcoholism.

PMID 26640531


The aim of this study was to observe the effect of a formulation of traditional Chinese medicine extracts known as Xingnaojia (XNJ) on the liver function, learning ability and memory of rats with chronic alcoholism and to verify the mechanism by which it protects the brain and liver. A rat model of chronic alcoholism was used in the study. The spatial learning ability and memory of the rats were tested. The rats were then sacrificed and their brains and hepatic tissues were isolated. The activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD) and levels of glutamate (Glu), N-methyl D-aspartate receptor subtype 2B (NR2B), cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (CDK5) and cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) in the hippocampus were analyzed. The ultrastructure of the hepatic tissue was observed by electron microscopy. In addition, the activities of alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) and aldehyde dehydrogenase (ALDH) in serum were tested and the levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), high-density lipoprotein (HDL), triglycerides (TG) and total cholesterol (TCHOL) were analyzed. XNJ enhanced the learning and memory of rats with chronic alcoholism. Treatment with XNJ increased the activity of SOD, and decreased the expression levels of NR2B mRNA and NR2B, CB1 and CDK5 proteins in the brain tissues compared with those in the model rats. It also increased the activity of ALDH in the serum and liver, decreased the serum levels of LDL, TG and TCHOL and increased the serum level of HDL. These results indicate that XNJ exhibited a protective effect against brain and liver damage in rats with chronic alcoholism.