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Identification and quantitative investigation of the effects of intestinal microflora on the metabolism and pharmacokinetics of notoginsenoside Fc assayed by liquid chromatography with electrospray ionization tandem mass spectrometry

Ju, Zhengcai, Li, Jia, Lu, Qian, Yang, Yingbo, Yang, Li, Wang, Zhengtao
Journal of separation science 2019 v.42 no.9 pp. 1740-1749
Panax notoginseng, bacterial communities, biotransformation, blood, community structure, electrospray ionization mass spectrometry, enzyme activity, half life, herbs, in vivo studies, intestinal microorganisms, intestines, patients, pharmacokinetics, prototypes, rats, saponins, spectrophotometers, tandem mass spectrometry, therapeutics, ultra-performance liquid chromatography
Notoginsenoside Fc, which is a protopanaxdiol‐type saponin isolated from the leaves of Panax notoginseng, exhibits an exceptional antiplatelet aggregatory effect. To study the modulating effect of gastrointestinal contents on the metabolic profile and pharmacokinetics, pseudo germ‐free rats were used to study the influence of the bacterial community structure on the metabolic profile. Glycosidase activities were measured using the spectrophotometric method. Biotransformations of notoginsenoside Fc in normal and pseudo germ‐free rat intestinal microflora were systematically investigated using ultra high performance liquid chromatography with tandem quadrupole/time‐of‐flight mass spectrometry. Moreover, a liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry method was established for simultaneous determination of the notoginsenoside Fc prototype and its degradation products. Through an in vivo pharmacokinetic study, the pharmacokinetic characteristics were compared between normal rats and pseudo germ‐free rats. During the in vitro biotransformation, seven deglycosylated products were detected and identified after incubation in the intestinal bacteria of normal rats. In pseudo germ‐free rats, glycosidase activities were significantly decreased, and no obvious degradation occurred. In an in vivo study, the systemic exposure was significantly increased 40%, as evidenced by the area under the blood concentration–time curve from time zero to infinity value and half‐life value, which were prolonged more in the pseudo germ‐free group than in normal rats. The results demonstrate that patients who use intestinal bacteria‐metabolized herbs, such as panax notoginseng, should understand the profile of intestinal bacteria to ensure therapeutic efficacy.