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1.  Antitumor activity and macrophage nitric oxide producing action of medicinal herb, Crassocephalum crepidioides 
Background
Crassocephalum crepidioides, a plant distributed in Okinawa Islands, is known in folk medicine; however, its anticancer activity has not been investigated. The aim of this study was to determine the in vitro and in vivo antitumor activities of C. crepidioides on murine Sarcoma 180 (S-180) and related molecular mechanisms.
Methods
The antitumor effect of C. crepidioides was evaluated in S-180-cell-bearing mice. Cell growth was assessed using a colorimetric assay. Nitrite and nitrate levels were measured by colorimetry. The expression levels of inducible NO synthase (iNOS) in murine RAW264.7 macrophages was assessed by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction. Activation of iNOS promoter was detected by reporter gene. Activation of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) was evaluated by electrophoretic mobility shift assay. The role of NF-κB signaling was analyzed using inhibitors of NF-κB and dominant-negative mutants, and Western blot analysis.
Results
C. crepidioides extract delayed tumor growth in S-180-bearing mice. However, it did not inhibit S-180 cell growth in vitro. Supernatant of cultured C. crepidioides-stimulated RAW264.7 macrophages was cytotoxic to S-180 cells. This cytotoxicity was associated with nitric oxide (NO) production. NF-κB signaling pathway was crucial for the transcriptional activation of iNOS gene. Isochlorogenic acid, a component of C. crepidioides, induced NF-κB activation and iNOS expression.
Conclusions
The results highlight the oncolytic and immunopotentiation properties of C. crepidioides mediated through NF-κB-induced release of NO from macrophages.
doi:10.1186/1472-6882-12-78
PMCID: PMC3407475  PMID: 22720874
2.  Efficacy of Bidens pilosa Extract against Herpes Simplex Virus Infection In Vitro and In Vivo 
The development of strains of herpes simplex virus (HSV) resistant to drugs has been reported among the immunocompromised patients. Thus, there is a need to develop new therapeutic agents for HSV infections. We evaluated the anti-HSV activity of Bidens pilosa (B. pilosa), a tropical weed, in tissue culture cells and a mouse model. B. pilosa extract showed potent virucidal activity. It inhibited plaque formation and suppressed virus yield in Vero and RAW 264.7 cells infected with HSV-1 and HSV-2. Both the binding of virus to host cells and penetration of virus into cells were also blocked by B. pilosa. Furthermore, B. pilosa was effective against thymidine kinase-deficient and phosphonoacetate-resistant HSV-1 strains. B. pilosa treatment increased the survival rate of HSV-infected mice and limited the development of skin lesions. Our results indicate that B. pilosa has anti-HSV activity and is thus a potentially useful medical plant for treatment of HSV infection.
doi:10.1155/2012/413453
PMCID: PMC3303703  PMID: 22474501

Results 1-2 (2)