Phyto Compounds

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18α-Glycyrrhetinic acid (18α-GA), a bioactive component of Glycyrrhiza glabra, declines immunological responses mediated by dendritic cells

18α-Glycyrrhetinic acid (18α-GA) has been shown in vitro immunomodulatory effects on dendritic cells (DCs). 18α-GA was intraperitoneally administered to mice and splenic DCs were evaluated for expression of co-stimulatory molecules using flow cytometry. Isolated DCs were added to mixed lymphocyte reaction (MLR) and the proliferation of T cells was measured using BrdU assay. The level of IFN-γ in the MLR supernatant was determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The in vivo effect of isolated DCs on antigen-specific delayed type hypersensitivity (DTH) response, and the number of regulatory T (Treg) cells in mice spleen by flow cytometry were investigated.

In DTH test, DCs isolated from 18α-GA-treated mice significantly suppressed antigen-specific cell mediated immune response (3.3 ± 1 mm in test group versus 6.5 ± 1.2 mm in control group, ρ < 0.01). The percentage of Treg cells in spleen of 18α-GA-treated mice (6.37% ± 2.3%) was lower than that of control group (13.85% ± 0.4%, ρ < 0.05). In vivo administration of 18α-GA resulted in inhibition of DCs maturation and T cell-mediated responses, the effects that may candidate this compound for its possible benefits in immune-mediated diseases.   


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