In-Chern-Hau-Tang and genipin reduces acute urinary bladder distension evoked sympathetic activation-induced hepatic dysfunction in rats

Yun He Yen, Wang Chuan Chen, Satoshi Hayakawa, Chiang Ting Chien*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Increased norepinephrine production by acute urine retention (AUR) induced sympathetic activation may contribute to acute liver injury (ALI) via the action of hepatic vasoconstriction and increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. We evaluated whether In-Chern-Hau-Tang, a hepatoprotective herb medicine, and its major ingredient genipin, may ameliorate norepinephrine-induced liver injury in the rat. We determined the effects of In-Chern-Hau-Tang and genipin on norepinephrine-induced oxidative stress in the Kupffer and endothelial cells and AUR-induced ALI in the rat via a chemiluminescence analyzer, physiologic and biochemical determination and western blot. The results of in vitro study showed that genipin with efficient H2O2 and HOCl scavenging activities decreased norepinephrine-enhanced ROS production in the Kupffer cell and endothelial cell cultures. AUR activated hepatic sympathetic nervous activity lead to a hepatic hypoxia/ hypoperfusion, and a reduction in bile flow. AUR increased intercellular adhesion molecular 1 (ICAM-1) protein expression, and hepatic ROS production from the activated leukocyte NADPH oxidase activity subsequently leading to plasma aspartate aminotransferase (AST) elevation. Hepatic sympathetic denervation, or oral pretreatment of In-Chern-Hau-Tang or genipin for 1 week ameliorated the level in AUR-induced hepatic hypoxia/hypoperfusion, and bile stasis. Hepatic denervation, In-Chern-Hau-Yang and genipin inhibited AUR-enhanced hepatic ICAM-1 expression, hepatic ROS production, leukocyte NADPH oxidase activity and plasma AST activity. In conclusion, In-Chern-Hau-Tang along with its active component, genipin, can ameliorate AUR-induced ALI via the alleviation of oxidative stress possibly by the inhibition of sympathetic induced hypoxia/hypoperfusion and leukocyte NADPH oxidase activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)339-349
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Journal of Chinese Medicine
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Acute urinary bladder distension
  • Genipin
  • In-Chern-Hau-Tang
  • Liver injury
  • Reactive oxygen species
  • Sympathetic nerve

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Complementary and alternative medicine


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