Traditional Chinese medicine treats ulcerative colitis by regulating gut microbiota, signaling pathway and cytokine: Future novel method option for pharmacotherapy


Heliyon. 2024 Mar 6;10(6):e27530. doi: 10.1016/j.heliyon.2024.e27530. eCollection 2024 Mar 30.


BACKGROUND: Ulcerative colitis (UC) is a chronic non-specific inflammatory disease with intestinal tract as the main site. The pathogenic of UC has not yet been clarified, and multiple mechanisms can lead to the pathogenesis of UC. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) offers an opportunity for UC treatment. TCM has become the preferred treatment for UC with characteristics of multiple targets, multiple pathways and high safety. This review attempted to summarize the characteristics of TCM (compound prescriptions, single Chinese herbs, and active ingredients) for UC treatment and discussed their pathogenesis based on analyzing the UC-related gut microbiota, signaling pathway and cytokine. In order to provide more systematic and diverse reference for TCM in the prevention and treatment of UC, and provide theoretical reference for clinical treatment of UC.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: The information was acquired from different databases, including Web of Science, PubMed, CNKI, Wanfang, and VIP databases. We then focused on the recent research progress in UC treatment by TCM. Finally, the deficiencies and future perspectives are proposed.

RESULTS: Modern pharmacological studies have shown that the compound prescriptions (strengthening spleen, clearing heat and removing dampness, clearing heat and removing toxin), single Chinese herbs (replenishing Qi, clearing heat, tonifying blood, etc.), and active ingredients (alkaloids, polysaccharides, flavonoids, polyphenols, terpenes, etc.) have an efficiency in UC treatment by regulating gut microbiota, signaling pathway and cytokine.

CONCLUSIONS: TCM can achieve its purpose of UC prevention and treatment by acting in multiple ways, and TCM deserves further research and development in this field.

PMID:38501018 | PMC:PMC10945194 | DOI:10.1016/j.heliyon.2024.e27530