A systematic review of the active saikosaponins and extracts isolated from Radix Bupleuri and their applications.Pharm Biol 2017; 55(1):620-635PB
Radix Bupleuri has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for over 2000 years with functions of relieving exterior syndrome, clearing heat, regulating liver-qi, and lifting yang-qi. More natural active compounds, especially saikosaponins, have been isolated from Radix Bupleuri, which possess various valuable pharmacological activities.
To summarize the current knowledge on pharmacological activities, mechanisms and applications of extracts and saikosaponins isolated from Radix Bupleuri, and obtain new insights for further research and development of Radix Bupleuri.
PubMed, Web of Science, Science Direct, Research Gate, Academic Journals and Google Scholar were used as information sources through the inclusion of the search terms 'Radix Bupleuri', 'Bupleurum', 'saikosaponins', 'Radix Bupleuri preparation', and their combinations, mainly from the year 2008 to 2016 without language restriction. Clinical preparations containing Radix Bupleuri were collected from official website of China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA).
RESULTS AND CONCLUSION
296 papers were searched and 128 papers were reviewed. A broad spectrum of in vitro and in vivo research has proved that Radix Bupleuri extracts, saikosaponin a, saikosaponin d, saikosaponin c, and saikosaponin b2, exhibit evident anti-inflammatory, antitumor, antiviral, anti-allergic, immunoregulation, and neuroregulation activities mainly through NF-κB, MAPK or other pathways. 15 clinical preparations approved by CFDA remarkably broaden the application of Radix Bupleuri. The main side effect of Radix Bupleuri is liver damage when the dosage is excess, which indicates that the maximum tolerated dose is critical for clinical use of Radix Bupleuri extract and purified compounds.