Shikonin Derivatives Protect Immune Organs from Damage and Promote Immune Responses In Vivo in Tumour-bearing Mice
Article first published online: 28 APR 2011
Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Volume 26, Issue 1, pages 26–33, January 2012
How to Cite
Long, S., GuangZhi, Y., BaoJie, G., Wei, X., YanYong, H., YingLi, W., Yang, Z. and LiHua, L. (2012), Shikonin Derivatives Protect Immune Organs from Damage and Promote Immune Responses In Vivo in Tumour-bearing Mice. Phytother. Res., 26: 26–33. doi: 10.1002/ptr.3503
- Issue published online: 6 JAN 2012
- Article first published online: 28 APR 2011
- Manuscript Received: 18 MAR 2011
- Manuscript Accepted: 18 MAR 2011
- Department of Science and Technology of Jilin Province. Grant Number: 20020503-19
- transplantable neoplasms;
- immune damage;
- natural killer cells;
- lymphocyte transformation
Shikonin, a major component of Lithospermum erythrorhizon and Arnebia euchroma, exhibits antiinflammatory, immunomodulatory and antitumour activities. Although many recent studies have focused on the antitumour effects of shikonin, the exact mechanisms underlying its antitumour and immunomodulatory effects in tumour-bearing mice remain unclear. The aim of the present study was to investigate the antitumour and immunomodulatory effects of shikonin derivatives (ShD) in tumour-bearing mice. Swiss mice inoculated with hepatoma HepA22 or sarcoma 180 (S180) cells were treated with ShD or 5-fluorouracil (5Fu). Survival time, immune organs, natural killer cell activity, lymphocytes, lymphocyte transformation and interleukin (IL)-2 production were analysed. ShD significantly prolonged the survival (median survival time prolonged by >7 days) of tumour-bearing mice in a dose-dependent manner, inhibited the growth of transplantable neoplasms (inhibitory rate, > 33%), and recovered (at [ShD] = 2.5 mg/kg/day) or increased (at [ShD] > 5 mg/kg/day) the number of CD3- and CD19-positive cells. ShD also played a role in protecting the immune organs from damage and reversed or enhanced immune responses, as noted by the nearly normal thymic structure; enlarged splenic corpuscles; and improved natural killer cell activity, lymphocyte transformation and IL-2 production in ShD-treated mice. ShD reduced the tumour load of tumour-bearing mice and protected the immune organs against tumour-induced damage and immune function impairment. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.