Emodin ameliorates ovalbumin-induced airway remodeling in mice by suppressing airway smooth muscle cells proliferation.
Int Immunopharmacol. 2020 Nov ;88:106855. Epub 2020 Aug 7. PMID: 32777676
Increased number of airway smooth muscle cells (ASMCs) is a characteristic of airway remodeling in asthma. In this study we investigated whether emodin alleviated airway remodeling in a murine asthma model and reduced the proliferation of ASMCs in vitro. We provided in vivo evidence suggesting that intraperitoneal injection of emodin (20 mg/kg) 1 h prior to OVA challenge apparently alleviated the thickness of airway smooth muscle, the mass of alpha-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA), collagen deposition, epithelial damage, goblet cell hyperplasia, airway inflammation and airway hyperresponsiveness (AHR) in lung tissue. Meanwhile, we found that emodin suppressed the activation of the Akt pathway in lungtissue of allergic mouse models. Additionally, we found that emodin inhibited cellular proliferation and Akt activation in a dose-dependent manner in vitro. Furthermore, LY294002, an inhibitor for PI3K, abrogated serum-induced phosphorylation of Akt, and decreased the proliferation of ASMCs. These findings indicated that emodin alleviated ASMCs proliferation by inhibiting PI3K/Akt pathway in vivo and in vitro, which may provide a potential therapeutic option for airway smooth muscle remodeling in asthma.