Aim of the Study Aqueous extract from Salvia Miltiorrhiza has been traditionally used to treat cardiovasulcar diseases. This study aims to explore the anti-inflammatory mechanisms underlying attenuation of atherosclerosis development by aqueous extract from Salvia Miltiorrhiza.
Materials and methods Male ApoE-/- mice were randomly allocated into the model, the SABP, and the rosuvastatin calcium groups (RC). After 8-wk-treatment, the lipid profiles in serum, the lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), and creatine kinase (CK) in heart tissue were measured and the morphology alterations of thoracic aorta and heart were assessed. The protein expression of Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), TGF beta-activated kinase 1 (TAK1), nuclear factor kappa-B (NF-κB), interleukin-6 (IL-6) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) in the heart tissue were determined by western blotting analysis. The serum low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), triglyceride (TG), and total cholesterol (TC) levels were increased and the high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) level was decreased in ApoE-/- mice.
Results SABP significantly decreased the serum lipid levels and improved histopathology in the thoracic aorta. In addition, SABP treatment reduced the expression of TLR4, TAK1, NF-κB, IL-6, and TNF-α, and inhibited the expression and activation of NF-κB in the heart of ApoE-/- mice. The LDH and CK in the heart did not differ significantly among different groups, and the heart did not have obvious pathological changes.
Conclusions These findings indicated that SABP may exert an anti-atherosclerotic effect by lowering blood lipids and inhibiting inflammatory response via TLR4/ NF-κB signaling pathway.