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Viruses 2015, 7(1), 352-377; doi:10.3390/v7010352

Epimedium koreanum Nakai Displays Broad Spectrum of Antiviral Activity in Vitro and in Vivo by Inducing Cellular Antiviral State

1
Korean Medicine (KM) Based Herbal Drug Development Group, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine, Deajeon 305-764, Korea
2
College of Veterinary Medicine, Chungnam National University, 220 Gung-Dong, Yuseong-Gu, Daejeon 305-764, Korea
These authors contributed equally to this study.
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Curt Hagedorn
Received: 2 December 2014 / Accepted: 14 January 2015 / Published: 20 January 2015
(This article belongs to the Section Antivirals & Vaccines)
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Abstract

Epimedium koreanum Nakai has been extensively used in traditional Korean and Chinese medicine to treat a variety of diseases. Despite the plant’s known immune modulatory potential and chemical make-up, scientific information on its antiviral properties and mode of action have not been completely investigated. In this study, the broad antiviral spectrum and mode of action of an aqueous extract from Epimedium koreanum Nakai was evaluated in vitro, and moreover, the protective effect against divergent influenza A subtypes was determined in BALB/c mice. An effective dose of Epimedium koreanum Nakai markedly reduced the replication of Influenza A Virus (PR8), Vesicular Stomatitis Virus (VSV), Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) and Newcastle Disease Virus (NDV) in RAW264.7 and HEK293T cells. Mechanically, we found that an aqueous extract from Epimedium koreanum Nakai induced the secretion of type I IFN and pro-inflammatory cytokines and the subsequent stimulation of the antiviral state in cells. Among various components present in the extract, quercetin was confirmed to have striking antiviral properties. The oral administration of Epimedium koreanum Nakai exhibited preventive effects on BALB/c mice against lethal doses of highly pathogenic influenza A subtypes (H1N1, H5N2, H7N3 and H9N2). Therefore, an extract of Epimedium koreanum Nakai and its components play roles as immunomodulators in the innate immune response, and may be potential candidates for prophylactic or therapeutic treatments against diverse viruses in animal and humans. View Full-Text
Keywords: Epimedium koreanum Nakai; herbal medicine; quercetin; antiviral effect; anti-influenza Effect Epimedium koreanum Nakai; herbal medicine; quercetin; antiviral effect; anti-influenza Effect
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Cho, W.-K.; Weeratunga, P.; Lee, B.-H.; Park, J.-S.; Kim, C.-J.; Ma, J.Y.; Lee, J.-S. Epimedium koreanum Nakai Displays Broad Spectrum of Antiviral Activity in Vitro and in Vivo by Inducing Cellular Antiviral State. Viruses 2015, 7, 352-377.

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