Polygonum multiflorum Thunb. is a traditional herbal medicine that is rich in polyphenols. The major compound, 2,3,5,4'-tetrahydroxystilbene-2-O-β-D-glucoside (THSG) has many pharmacological activities, such as antioxidative and free radical-scavenging properties, and the abilities to reduce hyperlipidemia, prevent lipid peroxidation, and protect the cardiovascular system. In this study, the anti-osteoarthritis (OA) effects of THSG were explored using in vitro and in vivo models. THSG inhibited nitric oxide (NO) and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) production and inducible NO synthase (iNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 expressions by lipopolysaccharide-stimulated RAW 264.7 cells. On the other hand, THSG inhibited PGE2 production and iNOS and matrix metalloproteinase-13 expressions by interleukin-1β-stimulated primary rat chondrocytes. Through a mono-iodoacetate-induced rat OA model assay, THSG reduced paw edema and improved the weight-bearing distribution. Therefore, THSG has anti-inflammatory activity and could be applied as a lead compound for the development as an OA drug.
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