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Uncaria rhynchophylla and its Major Constituents on Central Nervous System: A Review on Their Pharmacological Actions

Author(s):

Wen Yang, Siu-Po Ip, Ling Liu, Yan-Fang Xian* and Zhi-Xiu Lin   Pages 1 - 12 ( 12 )

Abstract:


Background: Uncaria rhynchophylla (Miq.) Jacks (Rubinaceae), a common herbal medicine known as Gou-teng in Chinese, is commonly used in Chinese medicine practice for the treatment of convulsions, hypertension, epilepsy, eclampsia and other cerebral diseases. The major active components of U. rhynchophylla are alkaloids, terpenoids and flavonoids. The protective effects of U. rhynchophylla and its major components on central nervous system (CNS) have become a focus of research in recent decades.

Objective: To systematically summarize the pharmacological activities of U. rhynchophylla and its major components on the CNS.

Method: This review summarized the experimental findings from our laboratories, together with other literature data obtained through a comprehensive search on databases including the Pubmed and the Web of Science.

Results: U. rhynchophylla and its major components such as rhynchophylline and isorhynchophylline have been shown to have neuroprotective effects on Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, depression, cerebral ischaemia through a number of mechanisms including anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory actions and regulation on neurotransmitters.

Conclusion: U. rhynchophylla and its major components possess multiple beneficial pharmacological actions on CNS. Futher studies on U. rhynchophylla and its major components are warranted to fully illustrate the underlying molecular mechanisms, pharmacokinetics, and toxicological profiles of these naturally occurring compounds and their potential for clinical application.

Keywords:

Uncaria rhynchophylla; Alkaloids; Rhynchophylline; Isorhynchophylline; Central nervous system; Pharmacological actions

Affiliation:

School of Chinese Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, School of Chinese Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Basic Medical School, Guizhou University of Chinese Medicine, School of Chinese Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, School of Chinese Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong



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