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Front. Pharmacol. | doi: 10.3389/fphar.2019.00985

Metabolic Profiling Analysis of Patients with Coronary Heart Disease Undergoing Xuefu Zhuyu Decoction Treatment

  • 1PLA General Hospital, China

Coronary heart disease (CHD) remains the leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is one of the effective complementary and alternative therapies used to improve the prognosis of CHD patients. Xuefu Zhuyu Decoction, a classical traditional Chinese medication for regulating Qi and promoting blood circulation, has a clinical benefit in CHD; however, the underlying mechanism is not clear. Recently, it was found that the metabolites involved in amino acid metabolism and the tricarboxylic acid cycle were altered in CHD patients with Qi and Yin deficiency syndrome. To understand the material foundation of Qi, it is of great significance to study the differential metabolites involved in Qi during treatment of CHD with Qi-regulating and blood-promoting herbs. In this study, we investigated the metabolic profiles of serum in CHD patients by nontargeted metabolomics analysis to detect differential metabolites between the Xuefu Zhuyu Decoction group and placebo group. Ten CHD patients were enrolled and treated with placebo granules or Xuefu Zhuyu Decoction granules in a random and double-blind manner. Serum samples of all patients were evaluated by untargeted high-performance liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry-based metabolomics. In total, 513 metabolites were detected in the serum of CHD patients, and 6 of these metabolites participating in 7 metabolic pathways were significantly different between CHD patients treated with Xuefu Zhuyu Decoction and the placebo group. Among the 6 differential metabolites, FA (20:2)-H and tetracarboxylic acid (24:0), involved in fatty acid metabolism; cis-aconitic acid, which participates in the tricarboxylic acid cycle; 2-deoxy-D-glucose, involved in glucose metabolism; and N-acetylglycine, involved in amino acid metabolism, were decreased, whereas spermine, which participates in amino acid metabolism, was increased as compared with the placebo group. Our findings, combined with the perspective of biological functions, indicate that 2-deoxy-D-glucose and spermine might constitute the partial material foundation of Qi in CHD patients treated with Xuefu Zhuyu Decoction.

Keywords: Metabolomics, coronary heart disease, Xuefu zhuyu decoction, LC-MS/MS, Ethnopharmacology

Received: 30 Jun 2019; Accepted: 31 Jul 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Tao, He, Wang and Liu. 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: Mx. Xiuhua Liu, PLA General Hospital, Beijing, 100853, Beijing Municipality, China,