Modern Chinese Medicine (MCM) Anti-Liver-Fibrosis Treatments
Anti-fibrosis has been an important research field in
treating chronic liver diseases. "He who can stop or hold the
progress of the liver fibrosis, he can cure the chronic liver
This statement emphasized the paramount importance of
anti-fibrosis therapy in treating chronic liver diseases.
Fibrosis is the common pathogenesis of chronic liver
diseases. It can happen in chronic viral hepatitis B and C and also in
alcoholic, drug, chemical intoxication, and parasitic liver disease.
Fibrosis is the liver’s repairing reaction to the
liver cell injuries and inflammation. Biopsy found that fibrosis exists in
62.6% patients with mild chronic hepatitis and 100% in severe chronic
hepatitis (CH). Without proper treatment fibrosis leads CH to cirrhosis,
hypertension of portal vein, ascites, hepatic encephalopathy,
hepatocellular carcinoma, and even liver failure. However, if this
pathological progress can be held, or reversed, the prognosis of chronic
liver disease can be greatly changed.
Through many years of studies in animal cirrhotic
models, it has been proved that to reverse fibrosis is possible,
especially in the early stages of liver disease. The question is, at what
stage does fibrosis become irreversible? In order to study this problem,
we are badly in need of a non-invasive method to assess the progression of
fibrosis and how anti-fibrosis treatment is working. Although many
researchers found have found that fibrosis is reversible, it is a common
brief that cirrhosis is irreversible.
For more than 40 years, Chinese medical anti-fibrosis
studies have also shown that fibrosis can be reversed. Clinically in
China, anti-fibrosis with Chinese medicine is a hot spot of research in
the treatment of chronic viral hepatitis. With the development of the
knowledge of molecular biology of the fibrosis, and integration of Chinese
and Western medicine, MCM has developed effective anti-fibrostic
treatments. With these treatments, there is possible to reverse or slow
down the progress of the fibrosis and restore the normal liver structure
The pathophysiological center of the liver fibrosis
is the activities of Hepatic Stellate Cells (HSC).
There are three basic phenomena related to liver
1. HSC activation and transferred to be fibroblastic
2. Retinoid contained in the HSC reduces
3. The synthesis of Extra Cellular Matrix (ECM) increase and the
decomposing of ECM decreases
These are the over-all results of the activation of HSC. The studies on
MCM anti-fibrosis treatments were focused on how to suppress the
activities of HSC and to interfere the production of related cytokines.
Anti-fibrosis therapy is a multi-faces treatment and consists of following
the underline primary disease – the chronic viral hepatitis. For other
chronic liver diseases, such as alcoholic liver disease, stop drinking,
and for parasitic liver disease, eliminate the parasite. Treating the
inflammation to prevent liver cell injury. MCM has provided many herbal
remedies such as, schizandrin B and C, glycyrrhizin, oleanolic acid,
sylimaline, oxymatrine, and Sedum. Most of these herbal remedies can lower
the ALT and AST level, protect the intact of the liver cell membrane and
reduce the inflammatory cell infiltration and liver cell necrosis.
Suppressing HSC activation and the actions of HSC-related
cytokines, such as TGFb1
(transforming growth factor-beta 1), PDGF (platelet delivered growth
factor), PAI (Plasminogen activator inhibitor),
and promoting the apoptosis (programmed death) of HSC.
Restore the equilibrium of production and decomposition of ECM.
This is the key to reverse the fibrosis. Fibroblastic activity is a
dynamic process and theoretically it is reversible. An effective
anti-fibrosis treatment should suppress the fiber synthesis and promote
its degradation. Chinese herbal treatment can affect both sides. It can
suppress the synthesis and secretion of ECM and promoting its
on many clinical and experimental research works, we have found following
Chinese herbs to have anti-fibrostic effects: Salviae Miltiorrhziae Radix
Cordyceps sinensis, Persicae Semen, Notoginseng Sanchis Radix, Stephania
tetrandra Radix, Cnidii Rhizoma, Angelicae Radix, and Astragali Radix.
These are the components in our anti-fibrosis formulas, through our unique
method of extracting the active ingredients for optimum effect.