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Nutrients 2018, 10(5), 589; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10050589

In Silico Investigation of the Pharmacological Mechanisms of Beneficial Effects of Ginkgo biloba L. on Alzheimer’s Disease

1
Institute of Medicinal Plant Development, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical College, 151 Malianwa North Road, Beijing 100193, China
2
Key Laboratory of Bioactive Substances and Resources Utilization of Chinese Herbal Medicine, Ministry of Education, 151 Malianwa North Road, Beijing 100193, China
3
Guangxi Institute of Medicinal Plant Development, Nanning, 189 Changgang Road, Nanning 520023, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 April 2018 / Revised: 1 May 2018 / Accepted: 8 May 2018 / Published: 10 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Dietary Supplements)
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Abstract

Based on compelling experimental and clinical evidence, Ginkgo biloba L. exerts a beneficial effect in ameliorating mild to moderate dementia in patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and other neurological disorders, although the pharmacological mechanisms remain unknown. In the present study, compounds, their putative target proteins identified using an inverse docking approach, and clinically tested AD-related target proteins were systematically integrated together with applicable bioinformatics methods in silico. The results suggested that the beneficial effects of G. biloba on AD may be contributed by the regulation of hormone sensitivity, improvements in endocrine homeostasis, maintenance of endothelial microvascular integrity, and proteolysis of tau proteins, particularly prior to amyloid β-protein (Aβ) plaque formation. Moreover, we identified six putative protein targets that are significantly related to AD, but have not been researched or have had only preliminary studies conducted on the anti-AD effects of G. biloba. These mechanisms and protein targets are very significant for future scientific research. In addition, the existing mechanisms were also verified, such as the reduction of oxidative stress, anti-apoptotic effects, and protective effects against amyloidogenesis and Aβ aggregation. The discoveries summarized here may provide a macroscopic perspective that will improve our understanding of the molecular mechanism of medicinal plants or dietary supplements, as well as new clues for the future development of therapeutic strategies for AD. View Full-Text
Keywords: Ginkgo biloba L.; Alzheimer’s disease; inverse docking; systems pharmacology; dietary supplements; alternative therapies; medicine food homology Ginkgo biloba L.; Alzheimer’s disease; inverse docking; systems pharmacology; dietary supplements; alternative therapies; medicine food homology
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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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Li, H.; Sun, X.; Yu, F.; Xu, L.; Miu, J.; Xiao, P. In Silico Investigation of the Pharmacological Mechanisms of Beneficial Effects of Ginkgo biloba L. on Alzheimer’s Disease. Nutrients 2018, 10, 589.

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