Berberis koreana has been known as enthopharmacologically valuable plant in Korea, China and Japan. This plant has been reported to display numerous pharmacological activities such as anti-oxidative, neuroprotective, and anti-cancer effects. Although the pharmacological potentials have been demonstrated, anti-inflammatory effect of this plant has not been fully elucidated yet. To evaluate its anti-inflammatory activity, macrophages activated by lipopolysaccharide (LPS) were employed and the production of inflammatory mediators was explored in terms of understanding its molecular inhibitory mechanism. Hot water extract from B. koreana (Bk-HWE) was able to suppress the production of NO and TNF- production and up-regulation of surface levels of costimulatory molecules such as CD80 and CD86. The anti-inflammatory effect of Bk-HWE seemed to be due to the inhibition of MAPK activation and c-fos translocation, according to immunoblotting analysis. In addition, Bk-HWE strongly suppressed the cell-cell adhesion events induced by functional activation of adhesion molecules such as CD29 and CD43. Therefore, our results suggest that Bk-HWE can be applied as an anti-inflammatory herbal medicine. To prove this assumption, further in vivo efficacy test will be continued in the following project.
Key words: Sorbus commixta, macrophages, inflammatory mediators, AP-1 translocation, JNK activation.