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Observing the synergic laxative effects of an herbal mixture of Liriope platyphylla, Glycyrrhiza uralensis, and Cinnamomum cassia in Loperamide-induced constipated rats


In this study, researchers from Pusan National University in South Korea investigated the laxative effects and mechanisms of action of traditional medicines such as Liriope platyphylla, Glycyrrhiza uralensis, and Cinnamomum cassia using constipated rats. The results of their study were published in the Journal of Medicinal Food.

  • Constipation can be acute or chronic and is attributed to various causes, such as lifestyle habits or the side effects of a disease.
  • For their study, the researchers induced constipation in Sprague Dawley rats using loperamide (Lop) and treated them with herbal mixtures containing L. platyphyllaG. uralensis, and C. cassia (LGC).
  • They examined alterations in excretion parameters, histological structure, mucin secretion, and related protein levels in the rats.
  • The researchers ensured constant food intake and water consumption among the animals.
  • They reported that the group treated with Lop and LGC had significantly greater stool and urine excretion than the group treated with Lop plus a vehicle.
  • Administration of LGC in the constipation model restored intestinal transit ratio to normal levels and increased the number of goblet cells, mucosal layer, and muscle thickness.
  • The Lop- and LCG-treated group also had greater mucin secretion than the Lop- and vehicle-treated group; expression of MUC2 and AQP8 genes also increased.
  • The researchers found via reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (reverse PCR) and Western blot that LGC treatment increased muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs).
  • Compared with the Lop- and vehicle-treated group, the LGC-treated group exhibited reduced expression of Ga protein and phosphorylation of PKC and PI3K, and increased levels of IP3.

Based on these results, the researchers concluded that traditional herbal mixtures like LGC induce a potent laxative effect against Lop-induced constipation via mucosal tissue changes, mucin production, and increased expression of mAChR and its downstream signals.

Journal Reference:

Kim JE, Yun WB, Lee ML, Choi JY, Park JJ, Kim HR, Song BR, Hong JT, Song HK, Hwang DY. SYNERGIC LAXATIVE EFFECTS OF AN HERBAL MIXTURE OF LIRIOPE PLATYPHYLLA, GLYCYRRHIZA URALENSIS, AND CINNAMOMUM CASSIA IN LOPERAMIDE-INDUCED CONSTIPATION OF SPRAGUE DAWLEY RATS. Journal of Medicinal Food. 15 March 2019;22(3):294–304. DOI: 10.1089/jmf.2018.4234



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