Phytother Res. 2011 (Jan); 25 (1): 128–136
Haines DD1, Varga B, Bak I, Juhasz B, Mahmoud FF, Kalantari H,
Gesztelyi R, Lekli I, Czompa A, Tosaki A.
Department of Pharmacology,
Faculty of Pharmacy,
University of Debrecen,
In this study, combinations of Ginkgo biloba leaf extract (EGb761) plus the carotenoid antioxidant astaxanthin (ASX) and vitamin C were evaluated for a summative dose effect in the inhibition of asthma-associated inflammation in asthmatic guinea-pigs. Ovalbumin-sensitized Hartley guinea-pigs challenged with ovalbumin aerosol to induce asthma, were administered EGb761, ASX, vitamin C or ibuprofen. Following killing, bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid was evaluated for inflammatory cell infiltrates and lung tissue cyclic nucleotide content. Each parameter measured was significantly altered to a greater degree by drug combinations, than by each component acting independently. An optimal combination was identified that included astaxanthin (10 mg/kg), vitamin C (200 mg/kg) and EGb761 (10 mg/kg), resulting in counts of eosinophils and neutrophils each 1.6-fold lower; macrophages 1.8-fold lower, cAMP 1.4-fold higher; and cGMP 2.04-fold higher than levels in untreated, asthmatic animals (p < 0.05).
In conclusion, EGb761, ASX and vitamin C are shown here to interact summatively to suppress inflammation with efficacy equal to or better than ibuprofen, a widely used non-steroidal antiinflammatory drug (NSAID). Such combinations of non-toxic phytochemicals constitute powerful tools for the prevention of onset of acute and chronic inflammatory disease if consumed regularly by healthy individuals; and may also augment the effectiveness of therapy for those with established illness.