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Impact of the Chinese herbal medicines on dual antiplatelet therapy with clopidogrel and aspirin: Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics outcomes and related mechanisms in rats

Xiao, Min, Qian, Chenyu, Luo, Xi, Yang, Mengbi, Zhang, Yufeng, Wu, Cheyuen, Mok, Chungtong, Lee, Puiwai, Zuo, Zhong
Journal of ethnopharmacology 2019 v.235 pp. 100-110
Angelica sinensis, Ligusticum sinense, Oriental traditional medicine, Pueraria montana var. lobata, Salvia miltiorrhiza, Western blotting, anticoagulant activity, aspirin, biomarkers, blood, blood circulation, blood sampling, blood stasis, carboxylesterase, coronary artery disease, enzyme activity, gene expression, hemorrhage, herbal medicines, laboratory animals, liver, lovage, medicinal plants, messenger RNA, metabolites, oral administration, patients, pharmacodynamics, pharmacokinetics, protein content, prothrombin, rats, reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, rhizomes, risk, sage, stomach, therapeutics, tissues
Dual antiplatelet therapy (DAPT) with aspirin (ASA) and clopidogrel (CLP) has been consistently shown clinical effectiveness in patients with coronary artery disease. According to the literature, four traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) herbs effective for prevention cardiovascular diseases, namely Radix Salvia Miltiorrhiza (Red sage root, Danshen), Radix Pueraria Lobata (Kudzu root, Gegen), Radix Angelica Sinensis (Angelica root, Danggui), and Rhizoma Ligusticum chuanxiong (Szehuan lovage rhizome, Chuanxiong), are of high potential to be co-administered during DAPT. Since all these herbs are blood vitalizing medicines and can promote blood circulation and eliminate blood stasis, it was hypothesized that they may potentially alter the clinical outcomes of DAPT with clopidogrel and aspirin.The current study is proposed aiming to preliminarily evaluate the impact of these four commonly used Chinese medicinal herbs on the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of the combination therapy with clopidogrel and aspirin and its relevant outcomes and mechanisms.In order to mimic the standard dosing regimen for DAPT in human, various Sprague-Dawley rats treatment groups were received a bolus oral dose of DAPT on day 1 followed by DAPT for consecutive 13 days in absence and presence of orally co-administered four TCM herbs (Danshen, Gegen, Danggui and Chuanxiong) at their low and high doses. On day 14, serial blood samples were collected after dosing to obtain the plasma concentrations of ASA, CLP and their corresponding metabolites by LC/MS/MS. At the end of last blood sampling point of each rat, about 4.5 ml of whole blood were collected to estimate the prothrombin time from each treatment groups. After all the blood sampling, the rats were sacrificed followed by collecting their livers for evaluations of enzyme activities and expressions in the related liver microsome preparations and stomach tissues for evaluations of their potential ulcer index. In addition, gene expression and protein levels of related biomarkers (COX-1, COX-2, P2Y12) in rat livers were measured by RT-PCR and Western blot, respectively, and compared among different treatment groups.Co-administration of Gegen and Danggui significantly altered the pharmacokinetics of ASA and CLP in DAPT with increased systemic exposure of ASA and CLP respectively. Although minimal impact on aspirin esterase activity for all co-administered herbs, significant inhibition on rCyp2c11 and carboxylesterase activities were observed for DAPT with Danshen, Gegen and Danggui co-treatment. In addition, significantly longer PT were found in all DAPT treatment groups. However, a trend of decrease in PT of DAPT in presence of Gegen, Danggui and Chuanxiong was noticed. Nevertheless, all the treatments did not cause detectable changes in COX and P2Y12 mRNA and protein expressions.Among the four studied TCMs, it was demonstrated that co-administration of Gegen and Danggui could lead to altered pharmacokinetics of DAPT with significant inhibition on rCyp2c11 and carboxylesterase activities. Although Gegen, Danggui and Chuanxiong might potentially offset the anticoagulant activity of DAPT, the overall pharmacodynamics outcome was not considered to be harmful due to lack of risk in bleeding, which warrant further verification for its clinical impact.