Erding formula and bioactive markers in hyperuricemia: towards rational scientific approaches for the modernization of Traditional Chinese Medicine

  • Author / Creator
    Zuo, Jieyu
  • Introduction: Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) represents one of the first holistic approaches in the world to treat and prevent disease. Herbal medicine is one of the major therapeutic remedy in TCM. It often involves multi-herb therapies instead of single herb preparations. Parallel to western medicine, hundreds of herbal formulas have been made available as finished products. Nowadays, the use of herbal products is popular as treatment option or to complement western medicine. Indications of the herbal formulas were established by TCM terms such as “heat-clearing and/or detoxifying” which lack modern pharmacological meanings. It is difficult for people without relevant background to understand such terms and their implications for treatments. Furthermore, due to the quality control issues of herbal medicines which contain multiple constituents, consumers may be confronted with the risk of using unstandardized products. Hence, in this thesis, the modernization of TCM is discussed through employing scientific pharmaceutical approaches to a traditional formula, called Erding formula (EF). The aim was to investigate if a new indication, hyperuricemia, can be assigned to a heat-clearing and detoxifying formula. Our hypothesis was: Can Erding formula be used for hyperuricemia treatment and is esculetin a bioactive marker for this new indication? Methods: A hypoxanthine and potassium oxonate‐induced hyperuricemic mouse model, a xylene‐induced inflammatory mouse model, and an acetic acid‐induced pain model were used to investigate EF and its constituent herbs. The quantity of esculetin was measured by high-performance liquid chromatography. The therapeutic effect of esculetin was assessed using potassium oxonate induced hyperuricemic mouse model, and esculetin and its metabolites were characterized in serum via ultra-performance liquid chromatography-quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry. To develop a modern dosage form, a laboratory-scale wet bead milling approach was employed to prepare esculetin nanocrystals. The formulation was further optimized by design of experiment, and an optimized formulation was then characterized for its saturation solubility and short-term stability.Results: The study showed that EF and Viola yedoensis Makino (Viola) lowered uric acid (UA) levels, while EF and all four individual herbs had anti‐inflammatory and analgesic activities. These findings revealed that EF was able to treat hyperuricemia and suggested that Viola was the main herb in EF on reducing UA levels. The study showed that esculetin significantly reduced UA levels and six metabolites of esculetin were identified in serum. This confirms that esculetin was absorbed and is a suitable bioactive and quality control marker for EF in hyperuricemia treatment. An esculetin-Povacoat nanocrystal formulation with a 200 nm particle size was successfully prepared. The formulation presented up to a 1.5-fold increase in saturation solubility compared to the bulk esculetin and it was stable for 180 days.Conclusion: The studies proved that Erding formula can be used for hyperuricemia treatment with esculetin as bioactive quality control marker. As well, a new nano-sized formulation of the bioactive marker, esculetin, was created. This presented the possibility to develop an innovative nanotechnological product of the active substances derived from herbal medicine. The findings facilitated a better understanding of TCM terms and concept through mechanistic scientific experiments. This study revealed a potential pathway and an idea to modernize TCM without setting aside its unique concepts. This might increase the global acceptance of TCM products. Furthermore, the TCM concept might be useful in the development of multi-component drug products.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Spring 2019
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
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