J Ethnopharmacol. 2008 Dec 6. [Epub ahead of print]
Astragalus membranaceus flavonoids (AMF) ameliorate chronic fatigue syndrome induced by food intake restriction plus forced swimming.
Kuo YH, Tsai WJ, Loke SH, Wu TS, Chiou WF. National Research Institute of Chinese Medicine, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC.
It has been suggested that alteration of immune function may be associated with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). In this study, the immunoregulatory effect of Astragalus membranaceus flavonoids (AMF) was evaluated in CF rats induced by food intake restriction plus forced swimming for 6 weeks. An atrophied spleen associated with a significantly decreased spleen/body weight ratio and a reduced spleen cells proliferation was found in CF rats when compared with home cage controls. AMF given orally at 20, 50 and 100mg/kg body weight once a day consecutively for 6 weeks could recover the reduced cell proliferation. A switch to Th1-dominated immune regulation was observed in CF rats as the cultured splenocytes produced more interleukin-2 (IL-2) but less IL-4 when compared with controls. Supplementation with AMF could significantly counteract the aberrant cytokine production and rats received AMF exhibited higher endurance capacity to swim when compared with those without AMF administration. Checking the spectrum signals confirmed that the three major isoflavones contained in AMF were ononin, formononetin, and demethylhomopterocarpin. Our results revealed that alterations of immune function may be associated with CFS and the tonic effects of AMF against CF may be attributable to balance the abnormal cytokine level by isoflavones.
PMID: 19103273 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]