Anti-inflammatory Effect of Boswellia sacra (Franckincense) Essential Oil in a Mouse Model of Allergic Asthma

알러지성 천식 모델 생쥐에서 프랑킨센스 에센셜 오일의 염증 억제 효과

  • Lee, Hye-Youn (Department of Bioengineering Graduate School at Konkuk University) ;
  • Yun, Mi-Young (Department of Beauty Health Care, Daejeon University) ;
  • Kang, Sang-Mo (Department of Bioengineering Graduate School at Konkuk University)
  • 이혜연 (건국대학교 대학원 생물공학과) ;
  • 윤미영 (대전대학교 뷰티건강관리학과) ;
  • 강상모 (건국대학교 대학원 생물공학과)
  • Published : 2008.12.28

Abstract

Frankincense, the gum resin derived from Boswellia species, is complex mixtures composed of about $5{\sim}9%$ highly aromatic essential oil, $65{\sim}85%$ alcohol-soluble resins, and the remaining water-soluble gums. The anti-inflammatory properties of frankincense, alcohole-soluble resins, are well-recognized, but the question of whether aromatic essential oil also plays a role in the allergic asthma remains unanswered. This study was performed to evaluate anti-inflammatory effects of Boswellia sacra essential oil (BSEO) on ovalbumin (OVA)-induced asthma mouse model. BALB/c mice after intraperitoneal OVA sensitization were challenged with intratracheal OVA. One experimental group was inhaled with 0.3% BSEO for the later 8 weeks. BALB/c mice were sensitized and challenged with OVA and developed airway eosinophilia, mucus hypersecretion, and airway hyperresponsiveness. In contrast, the BSEO treated mice had reduced a number of eosinophils among BALF cells, goblet cell hyperplasia, and airway hyperresponsiveness. Cytokine analysis of BALF revealed that BSEO caused an increase in Th1 cytokine (interferon-$\gamma$ (IFN-$\gamma$)) and a decrease in Th2 cytokines (interleukin-4 (IL-4), IL-5 and IL-13) levels. In addition, the OVA-specific serum IgE and eotaxin levels were also reduced. In mice inhaled BSEO, $CD4^+$, $CD3^+/CCR3^+$, and $B220^+/CD23^+$ mediastinal lymph nodes cells were also decreased. These results suggest that inhaled BSEO as a immunomodulator in Th1/Th2 mediated asthma may have therapeutic potential for the treatment in allergic airway inflammation by a simple, cost-effective way.

Keywords

Boswellia sacra;frankincense;essential oil;allergic asthma;airway inflammation

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