Protective Effect of Dandelion Extracts on Ethanol-Induced Acute Hepatotoxicity in C57BL/6 Mice

  • Liu, Xiao-Yu (BK 21 Center of Smart Food & Drug, Inje University) ;
  • Ma, Jie (BK 21 Center of Smart Food & Drug, Inje University) ;
  • Park, Chung-Mu (BK 21 Center of Smart Food & Drug, Inje University) ;
  • Chang, Hee-Kyung (Department of Pathology, Medical College of Kosin University) ;
  • Song, Young-Sun (BK 21 Center of Smart Food & Drug, Inje University)
  • Published : 2008.12.31


Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) has been widely used as an anti-inflammatory agent in oriental medicine. In the current study, we investigated the protective effect, and the possible mechanism, of dandelion extracts against ethanol-induced acute hepatotoxicity in C57BL/6 mice. Dandelion water and ethanol extract was administered at 2 g/kg body weight (BW) once daily for 7 consecutive days, whereas control and ethanol groups received water by gavage. Ethanol (50% ethanol; 6 g/kg BW) was administered 12 hr before sacrificing the mice in order to generate liver injury. Significantly increased serum aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) activities as well as liver triglyceride (TG) and cholesterol levels were attenuated by dandelion supplementation. In addition, dandelion extracts not only enhanced alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) and anti-oxidative enzyme activities, but reduced lipid peroxidation. Cytochrome P450 2E1 (CYP 2E1), one of the critical enzymes xenobiotic metabolism, expression was lower with ethanol treatment but restored by dandelion supplementation. These results were confirmed by improved histopathological changes in fatty liver and hepatic lesions induced by ethanol. In conclusion, dandelion could protect liver against ethanol administration by attenuating of oxidative stress and inflammatory responses.


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