School of Chinese Medicine
Embryotoxicity of psoralea corylifolia L.: In vivo and In vitro studies
BACKGROUND: Psoralea corylifolia L. (PC) was commonly used to treat miscarriages clinically. The aim of this study was to examine its embryotoxicity in mice and embryonic stem cells (ESCs). METHODS: Quality control of PC extract including reference marker compounds, pesticide residues, and heavy metals was authenticated with HPLC, Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS), and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry. Pregnant mice were randomly assigned into five groups and dosed with distilled water (G1), PC extract of 2 (G2), 4 (G3), or 8 g/kg/day (G4), and vitamin A (G5). Meanwhile, half maximal inhibitory concentration values for ESCs and 3T3 cells were identified in a cytotoxicity assay, and apoptosis in neuroepithelium was assessed by transmission electron microscopy. RESULTS: In the G4 group, a statistically significant decrease in the total fetus, live fetus, and gravid uterine weight, and increase in the resorbed fetus, postimplantation loss, and neuroepithelial apoptosis as well as maternal liver-weight were found (p < 0.05). CONCLUSIONS: PC extracts at 8 g/kg/day might cause fetal toxicity and maternal liver damage in mice, although it did not cause typical malformation and ESC's cytotoxicity in this experiment. Our data suggested that high dosage and long-term administration of PC preparations may not be safe for pregnant women. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Apoptosis, Embryonic stem cell, Embryotoxicity, Mouse, Psoralea corylifolia L, Segment II study
Source Publication Title
Birth Defects Research Part B: Developmental and Reproductive Toxicology
Link to Publisher's Edition
Xu, M., Tian, X., Leung, K., Lee, K., Chow, T., Deng, B., Yiu, C., Chow, C., Zhao, Z., Yang, Z., Fun, F., Xiao, T., Xu, W., & Deng, P. (2012). Embryotoxicity of psoralea corylifolia L.: In vivo and In vitro studies. Birth Defects Research Part B: Developmental and Reproductive Toxicology, 95 (6), 386-394. https://doi.org/10.1002/bdrb.21028