Yiqi Wenyang Fang ameliorates allergic rhinitis through inhibiting inflammatory response and promoting the expression of Foxp3.Int J Immunopathol Pharmacol 2016; 29(4):696-706IJ
Allergic rhinitis (AR) is an inflammatory disease with a hypersensitivity response to environmental stimulus. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of Yiqi Wenyang Fang (YWF) on AR and investigate the underlying mechanism. A total of 48 female Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into six groups (normal control, model control, YWF at low dose, YWF at median dose, YWF at high dose, and loratadine). Rats were injected with antigen for sensitization. Then, rats in the YWF groups were treated with different dose of YWF for 28 days. Loratadine was used as a positive control. Number of sneezes, degree of runny nose, nasal rubbing movements, and tissue damage were scored. The protein and mRNA expression of Foxp3 were determined by western blot and real time-PCR analysis, respectively. Flow cytometry was used to detect the number of CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ Treg cells. The content of interleukin (IL)-10, transforming growth factor β1 (TGF-β1), IL-13, and IL-4 in the serum were detected by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Scores of symptoms were significantly reduced and nasal mucosa damage was alleviated after YWF administration. YWF increased the expression of Foxp3, IL-10, TGF-β1, and number of CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ Treg cells which were reduced by antigen injection. The expression levels of IL-13 and IL-4 were increased after antigen administration while decreased after YWF treatment. YWF may ameliorate AR through inhibiting inflammatory response and promoting Foxp3 expression.