Research Topic

Herbal Hepatotoxicity: New Advances, Scientific Mechanisms and Rational Usage

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About this Research Topic

Herbal hepatotoxicity, an unresolved critical issue which impacts clinical safety of herbal remedies worldwide, has been recognized for many years, but new herbal hepatotoxins are constantly identified. In China, it is newly estimated that nearly 1/4 of drug-induced liver injury (DILI) cases are attributed to ...

Herbal hepatotoxicity, an unresolved critical issue which impacts clinical safety of herbal remedies worldwide, has been recognized for many years, but new herbal hepatotoxins are constantly identified. In China, it is newly estimated that nearly 1/4 of drug-induced liver injury (DILI) cases are attributed to herbal medicine and another 1/2 of DILI cases cannot exclude the attribution of herbal medicine. Herbal hepatotoxicity is a fast expanding problem threatening people’s health, but recent researches are still insufficient to solve it.

The aim of this Research Topic is to collect frontier reviews, opinions, experimental and clinical researches related to herbal hepatotoxicity, which would be helpful to deepen scientific understanding of herbal hepatotoxicity, improve rational uses of herbal medicines and therewith reduce herbal medicine-induced liver injury (HMILI).

The major points of the Research Topic:
-- The major and emerging herbal hepatotoxins regarding their recent case reports, new patterns of liver injury, attribution and drug interactions.
The attribution of HMILI is quite difficult and needs lots of effects to achieve fairness due to the complicated composition of herbal medication, as well the frequent combinations with chemical drugs. It is essential to assess the level of evidence for such hepatoxocity.
-- The key advances of diagnosis approaches and treatments to HMILI.
Diagnosing HMILI in early stage is obviously helpful to the timely withdrawal of drug and treatment. Some cutting-edge techniques (e.g. multi-omics and microRNA array) would provide promising advances to early diagnosis. The differentiated and customized treatment to HMILI according to the injury pattern and mechanism would be addressed.
-- The frontier opinions of rational uses of herbal medicines to avoid HMILI.
Most of HMILI are caused by non-rational uses. In Chinese 5000-years history of herb uses, some theory, principles and procedures to avoid liver injury of herbal medicines are documented. Some frontier researches aiming translate such procedures into clinical guidelines would be included to address this issue.
-- The novel advances in classifying the intoxication patterns and mechanisms of the major herbal hepatotoxins.
Some concise and ideal classifications correlated into molecular mechanisms and intoxication patterns would be helpful to understand HMILI and its treatment. The researches and reviews regarding this issue are welcome.
-- The new approaches and methodologies in studying HMILI.
The fast advances in system biology provide powerful support to HMILI investigation. The achievements and perspectives of some new approaches would be discussed, including translational toxicology, omics and system biology, network toxicology, pharmacogenomics and pathotoxicology, etc..

Each review benefits from the inclusion of studies published in non-English journals which are not indexed internationally (e.g. from India or China). All species need to be validated taxonomically (e.g. www.theplantlist.org) and the full name, including authorities and family, needs to be included. If there are taxonomic problems in the original paper this should be highlighted. And, importantly, detailed information in pharmacological studies should be included, such as the type of extract, dose range and duration, minimal toxic concentration, the model used, what controls (positive or negative) were used, as well as other basic pharmacological data.


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