What is Hovenia dulcis Extract?
Hovenia dulcis, the oriental raisin tree, is a hardy tree found from Asia, over Eastern China and Korea to the Himalayas(up to altitudes of 2,000 m), growing preferably in a sunny position on moist sandy or loamy soils. The tree has been introduced as an ornamental tree to several countries, and the fruit is also edible.
Native to Japan, China, North and South Korea.
Introduced range: Invasive in South American rainforests and Tanzania. Introduced but not invasive in USA, Australia, New Zealand and Central Africa.
— Hovenia dulcis THUNB
-Hovenia acerba — Lindl.
-Hovenia inequalis — DC.
-Hovenia dulcisThunb. ex Murray
The fleshy rachis of the infructescence is sweet, fragrant and is edible raw or cooked. Dried, they look and taste like raisins. An extract of the seeds, bough and young leaves can be used as a substitute for honey and is used for making wine and candy.
An extract of the leave contains hodulcine, a glycoside which exhibits an anti-sweet activity.Ampelopsin is a flavanonol found in H. dulcis and is credited with hepatoprotective effects.
The timber is fine and hard and is used for building construction and fine furniture.
The Korea Food & Drug Administration approved in December 2008 that extracts of the Hovenia dulcis (헛개나무) fruit can protect and help recover the liver from substances such as alcohol. The main chemical for this effect in Hovenia dulcis is Quercetin, which has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties.
There is a commercially available dairy product in Korea called Kupffers offers 2,460 mg of Hovenia dulcis extract.
Dihydromyricetin can be isolated from Hovenia dulcis and is under study as an alcohol antagonist and as a treatment for alcoholism.
Liver Health of Hovenia dulcis Extract
Hovenia dulcis (Japanese Raisin Tree) is a source of dihydromyricetin (Ampelopsin) and has traditionally been used as an anti-Alcohol herb and hangover cure. At least one human study has noted that, when taken before drinking, it can reduce circulating levels of alcohol.
Some Research Report
1.The hepatoprotective effects of the fruits of Hovenia dulcis THUNB. on chemically or immunologically induced experimental liver injury models were examined. The methanol extract showed significant hepatoprotective activity against CCl4-toxicity in rats and D-galactosamine (D-GalN)/lipopolysaccharide-induced liver injury in mice. The methanol extract also significantly protected against CCl4-toxicity in primary cultured rat hepatocytes. Hepatoprotective activity-guided fractionation and chemical analysis led to the isolation of an active constituent, (+)-ampelopsin (1) from the methanol extract.
This study involved testing the hepaprotective (liver protecting) effects of the fruits of the hovenia dulcis tree by inducing liver injuries in mice by both chemical and immunological means. The extract from the fruits of hovenia dulcis showed significant liver protecting properties. The study found that the chemical in the extract responsible for this was ampelopsin, which is commonly known as dihydromyricetin.
2.The protective effects of juice and fermented vinegar from Hovenia dulcis peduncles on chronically ethanol-induced biochemical changes in male mice were investigated. Administration of ethanol (50%, v/v, 10 mL kg⁻¹) to mice for 6 weeks induced liver damage with a significant increase (P < 0.01) of the liver index, aspartate transaminase (AST), alanine transaminase (ALT), gamma glutamyl transferase (γ-GT) in the serum and the hepatic lipid peroxidation (LPO) level. In contrast, administration of juice or fermented vinegar from Hovenia dulcis peduncles (10 mL kg⁻¹ bw) along with alcohol significantly (P < 0.05) decreased the activities of the enzymes (AST, ALT and γ-GT), liver index, concentrations of triglyceride (TG) and total cholesterol (TCH) in the serum and the hepatic TG and LPO levels. Mice treated with juice or fermented vinegar from Hovenia dulcis peduncles showed better profiles of the antioxidant systems with relatively higher glutathione (GSH) content, total superoxide dismutase (T-SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) activities. All these results were accompanied by histological observations in liver. The results demonstrate that both of the juice and fermented vinegar from Hovenia dulcis peduncles have beneficial effects in reducing the adverse effect of alcohol.
In this study ethanol was chronically administered in high doses to mice in a control group, causing significant damage to the liver. In another group, hovenia dulcis extract was administered along with the alcohol. The group in which the hovenia dulcis extract (dihydromyricetin) was given with the ethanol showed significantly lower signs of liver damage.
To study the effect of ampelopsin on angiogenesis.
The anti-angiogenic effect was evaluated by MTT assay for proliferation of endothelial cells. The concentration of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and basic-fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) from human hepatocellular carcinoma Bel-7402 cells were detected by enzyme linked immunosorbant assay (ELISA). Immunohistochemical staining was conducted to detect the expression of VEGF and bFGF. The VEGF and bFGF in the cancer cells were examined by flow cytometry. The inhibitory effect of ampelopsin on the growth of human hepatocellular carcinoma Bel-7402 in nude mice was studied.
Ampelopsin was shown to inhibit the proliferation of primary cultured bovine aortic endothelial cells in a concentration dependent manner in range of 6.4 — 51.2 microg/ml. The IC50 (50% inhibition concentration) value was 22.0 +/- 4.0 microg/ml. ELISA assay was shown that treatment with 12.8 microl/m1, 25.6 microl/ml and 38.4 microg/ml of ampelopsin resulted in an inhibition of VEGF production released by Bel-7402, and the inbibtitory rate was 14.2%, 40.0% and 49.6%, respectively. After exposure to 12.8 microg/ml of ampelopsin, a decrease in the expression and activity of VEGF and bFGF was observed by immunohistochemical staining. The concentration of VEGF and bFGF secretion by Bel-7402 cells were lower following ampelopsin treatment as shown by flow cytometry. Treatment with 25.6 microg/mL and 38.4 microg/ml of ampelopsin, the inbibitory rates were 32.2% and 57.4% for VEGF, and 54.9% and 62.6% for bFGF, respectively. The inhibitory rate of ampelopsin to the growth of the transplant tumor in nude mice were 24.3%, 41.4% and 45.75 respectively at the dose of 100 mg/kg, 150 mg/kg and 200 mg/kg.
Ampelopsin is a potent inhibitor of VEGF and bFGF expression and production in human hepatocellular carcinoma Bel-7402 cell, and may be a promising angiogenesis inhibitor.
This study found an inhibitory effect of ampelopsin on the growth of human hepatocellular carcinoma Bel-7402, which suggests it may help to prevent malignant hepatocellular carcinoma, the most common form of liver cancer.
Anti-diabetic and Hovenia dulcis Extract
Hovenia dulcis Thunb, a food supplement and traditional medicine used in East Asia, has been demonstrated to exhibit hepatoprotective, antimicrobial, neuroprotective, and anti-oxidant activities. To evaluate the anti-oxidant activities of H.dulcis in STZ-induced diabetic mice, the different extracting solvents were employed to compare the antioxidant activity by the classical Fenton’s reagent, the concentrations of SOD, MDA, and iNOS in the serum were determined. The results showed that the ethanol (70%) exhibited the most effective antioxidant activity and dose-dependently upregulation of SOD and downregulation of MDA and iNOS significantly in STZ-induced diabetic mice. These indicated that H.dulcis displayed remarkable anti-diabetic activity.
Dosage of Hovenia dulcis Extract supplement:
An ethanolic extract of 125mg/kg has been used in rats with efficacy, which translates to an estimated human dosage of:
- 1,400mg for a 150lb person
- 1,800mg for a 200lb person
- 2,300mg for a 250lb person
Side effects and safety of Hovenia dulcis Extract
One animal study attempting to find toxicity failed to find any side-effects associated with oral doses up to 22g/kg bodyweight in mice, 36.6 times higher than the highest active dose tested