Panax notoginseng saponins promote liver regeneration through activation of the PI3K/AKT/mTOR cell proliferation pathway and upregulation of the AKT/Bad cell survival pathway in mice.
BMC Complement Altern Med. 2019 Jun 10 ;19(1):122. Epub 2019 Jun 10. PMID: 31182089
BACKGROUD: The regenerative capacity of the liver is crucial for the host to survive after serious hepatic injuries, tumor resection, or living donor liver transplantation. Panax notoginseng saponins (PNS) have been reported to exert protective effects during organ injuries. The present study aimed to evaluate the effect of PNS on liver regeneration(LR) and on injuries induced by partial hepatectomy (PH).
METHODS: We performed 70% partial PH on C57BL/6 J mice treated with or without PNS. LR was estimated by liver weight/body weight, serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) levels and cell proliferation, and the related cellular signals were analyzed by Western blot.
RESULTS: Different concentrations of PNS promoted hepatocyte proliferation in vitro. Mice in the PNS group showed higher liver/body weight ratios at 2 d and 7 d (P < 0.05) after PH and lower levels of serum ALT and AST (P < 0.05) compared to those of mice in the normal control (NC) group. Histological analysis showed that the expression of proliferating cell nuclear antigen(PCNA) at 2 d and 7 d after PH was significantly higher in the PNS group than in the NC group (P < 0.05). Mechanistically, the AKT/mTOR cell proliferation pathway and AKT/Bad cell survival pathway were activated by PNS, which accelerated hepatocyte proliferation and inhibited apoptosis (P < 0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: PNS promoted liver regeneration through activation of PI3K/AKT/mTOR and upregulated the AKT/Bad cell pathways in mice.