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In vitro and in vivo metabolism of Cistanche tubulosa extract in normal and chronic unpredictable stress-induced depressive rats

Li, Yang, Peng, Ying, Ma, Ping, Wang, Mengyue, Peng, Chongsheng, Tu, Pengfei, Li, Xiaobo
Journal of chromatography 2019 v.1125 pp. 121728
Cistanche tubulosa, antidepressants, chromatography, feces, gastrointestinal system, glycosidases, homeostasis, intestinal microorganisms, iridoid glycosides, metabolism, metabolites, models, rats, therapeutics, urine
Cistanche tubulosa, one species of Cistanches Herba, was recently confirmed to have antidepressant efficacy in chronic unpredictable stress (CUS) rats by restoring homeostasis of intestinal microbiota. In this paper, we aim to explore the metabolic profile of C. tubulosa in normal and CUS induced depressive model rats in vitro and in vivo. Using UPLC-Q-TOF-MS, the in vitro gastrointestinal metabolism of Cistanche tubulosa extract (CTE) was evaluated in both normal and CUS rats. At the same time, in vivo metabolism of CTE in normal and depressed rats were also investigated in rat urine and feces. A total of 20 and 26 metabolites were characterized from in vitro and in vivo metabolism in normal and CUS rats, respectively. CTE was metabolized to aglycones and degradation products of phenylethanoid glycosides (PhGs) and iridoid glycosides whether by normal or depressed rat intestinal microbiota in vitro. Phase II metabolites of aglycones and degradation products of PhGs and iridoid glycosides were the main metabolites in rat urine and feces. Additionally, the metabolic capability to generate secondary glycosides and aglycones in depressive rat intestinal microbiota was much weaker than that in normal rat intestinal microbiota, which was attributed to the disordered glycoside hydrolases produced by intestinal microbiota in CUS depressed rats. The results of this study laid the foundation for understanding the metabolic process and therapeutic mechanism of CTE's antidepressant property.