Letters To The Editor
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World J Gastroenterol. May 21, 2010; 16(19): 2448-2450
Published online May 21, 2010. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v16.i19.2448
Herbal extracts as hepatoprotectants against acetaminophen hepatotoxicity
Hartmut Jaeschke, C David Williams, Mitchell R McGill, Anwar Farhood
Hartmut Jaeschke, C David Williams, Mitchell R McGill, Department of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Therapeutics, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS 66160, United States
Anwar Farhood, Department of Pathology, Brackenridge Hospital, Austin, TX 78701, United States
Author contributions: Jaeschke H designed and wrote the letter; Williams CD and McGill MR performed literature search, analyzed data and made revisions to the letter; Farhood A evaluated histology sections and made revisions to the letter.
Correspondence to: Hartmut Jaeschke, PhD, Department of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Therapeutics, University of Kansas Medical Center, 3901 Rainbow Blvd, MS-1018, Kansas City, KS 66160, United States. hjaeschke@kumc.edu
Telephone: +1-913-5887969 Fax: +1-913-5887501
Received: February 15, 2010
Revised: March 18, 2010
Accepted: March 25, 2010
Published online: May 21, 2010
Abstract

Many plant-derived natural products have the potential to be hepatoprotective and therefore can be used to treat acute and chronic liver diseases. The challenge is to identify the most promising compounds and evaluate their protective mechanism. In a recently published article, Wang et al evaluated extracts of the plant Gentiana manshurica Kitagawa (GM) in a model of acetaminophen hepatotoxicity. The authors concluded that GM is hepatoprotective against acetaminophen-induced liver injury due to its antioxidant properties and anti-apoptotic capacity. We would like to discuss the limitations of this experimental approach and question the conclusion based on the data presented in this manuscript and the published literature.

Keywords: Acetaminophen, Drug hepatotoxicity, Herbal extracts, N-acetylcysteine