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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(12), 28705-28745; doi:10.3390/ijms161226126

Current Status of Herbal Medicines in Chronic Liver Disease Therapy: The Biological Effects, Molecular Targets and Future Prospects

1
School of Chinese Medicine, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China
2
Department of Anatomy, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Johannes Haybaeck
Received: 4 October 2015 / Revised: 25 November 2015 / Accepted: 25 November 2015 / Published: 2 December 2015
(This article belongs to the Collection Molecular Mechanisms of Human Liver Diseases)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1224 KB, uploaded 2 December 2015]   |  

Abstract

Chronic liver dysfunction or injury is a serious health problem worldwide. Chronic liver disease involves a wide range of liver pathologies that include fatty liver, hepatitis, fibrosis, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. The efficiency of current synthetic agents in treating chronic liver disease is not satisfactory and they have undesirable side effects. Thereby, numerous medicinal herbs and phytochemicals have been investigated as complementary and alternative treatments for chronic liver diseases. Since some herbal products have already been used for the management of liver diseases in some countries or regions, a systematic review on these herbal medicines for chronic liver disease is urgently needed. Herein, we conducted a review describing the potential role, pharmacological studies and molecular mechanisms of several commonly used medicinal herbs and phytochemicals for chronic liver diseases treatment. Their potential toxicity and side effects were also discussed. Several herbal formulae and their biological effects in chronic liver disease treatment as well as the underlying molecular mechanisms are also summarized in this paper. This review article is a comprehensive and systematic analysis of our current knowledge of the conventional medicinal herbs and phytochemicals in treating chronic liver diseases and on the potential pitfalls which need to be addressed in future study. View Full-Text
Keywords: chronic liver disease; herbal medicines; molecular targets; Chinese medicine herbal formulae chronic liver disease; herbal medicines; molecular targets; Chinese medicine herbal formulae
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Hong, M.; Li, S.; Tan, H.Y.; Wang, N.; Tsao, S.-W.; Feng, Y. Current Status of Herbal Medicines in Chronic Liver Disease Therapy: The Biological Effects, Molecular Targets and Future Prospects. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16, 28705-28745.

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