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Review ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Pharmacol. | doi: 10.3389/fphar.2019.00927

Chinese medicines for preventing and treating radiation-induced pulmonary injury: a review of 2007-2017

Yan Ding1, Yuechao Liu1, Hongliang Li1, Yong Li1,  Minglun Li2, Ming Liu1, Xianhe Wang1, Fengjun Cao1* and  Xuanbin Wang3*
  • 1Hubei University of Medicine, China
  • 2Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Germany
  • 3Laboratory of Chinese Herbal Pharmacology, Oncology Center, Renmin Hospital; Biomedical Research Institute; Hubei Key Laboratory of Wudang Local Chinese Medicine Research, Hubei University of Medicine, Hubei University of Medicine, China

Thoracic radiotherapy is a mainstay of the treatment for lung, esophageal, and breast cancers. Radiation-induced pulmonary injury (RIPI) is a common side-effect of thoracic radiotherapy, which may limit the radiotherapy dose and compromise the treatment results. However, the current strategies for RIPI are not satisfactory and may induce other side-effects. Chinese medicines (CMs) have been used for more than a thousand years to treat a wide range of diseases, including lung disorders. In this review, we screened the literature from 2007 to 2017 in different online databases, including China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI), Chongqing VIP, Wanfang and PubMed, summarized the effectiveness of CMs in preventing and treating RIPI, explored the most frequently used drugs, and aimed to provide insights into potential CMs for RIPI. Altogether, CMs attenuated the risk of RIPI with an occurrence rate of 15.9% vs. 38.0% (P<0.001) compared with the control groups. We also found that CMs (alone and combined with western medical treatment) for treating RIPI exerted a higher efficacy rate than that of the control groups (78.35% vs. 58.19%). In the screened literature, 99 CMs in 48 families were used for the prevention and treatment of RIPI. All top four most frequently used CMs were tonics, including Glycyrrhizae radix et rhizome (with a frequency of 40.0%), Ophiopogonis radix (with a frequency of 40.0%), Astragali radix (with a frequency of 31.11%), and Angelicae sinensis radix (with a frequency of 22.22%). Taken together, CMs might have a potential role in RIPI prevention and treatment. However, further high quality investigations in pharmacological effects and underlying mechanisms, and toxicological aspects are warranted.

Keywords: Chinese medicines, Radiation-induced pulmonary injury, prevention, Treatment, Tonics, review

Received: 01 Apr 2019; Accepted: 22 Jul 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Ding, Liu, Li, Li, Li, Liu, Wang, Cao and Wang. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence:
Mr. Fengjun Cao, Hubei University of Medicine, Shiyan, Hubei, China, fengjuncao@hbmu.edu.cn
Prof. Xuanbin Wang, Hubei University of Medicine, Laboratory of Chinese Herbal Pharmacology, Oncology Center, Renmin Hospital; Biomedical Research Institute; Hubei Key Laboratory of Wudang Local Chinese Medicine Research, Hubei University of Medicine, Shiyan, China, wangxb@hbmu.edu.cn