In vivo radioprotective effect of Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer and identification of active ginsenosides

Hae June Lee, Se Ra Kim, Jong Choon Kim, Chang Mo Kang, Yun Sil Lee, Sung Kee Jo, Tae Hwan Kim, Jong Sik Jang, Seung Yeol Nah, Sung Ho Kim

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50 Scopus citations


This study evaluated the effect of water extracts of Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer (PG), panaxadiol (PD), panaxatriol (PT), ginsenoside Rb1, Rb2, Rc, Rd, Re and Rg1 on jejunal crypt survival, endogenous spleen colony formation and apoptosis in jejunal crypt cells in gamma-irradiated mice. Jejunal crypts were protected by pretreatment with PG, Rc and Rd. Administration of PG, PD, Rd and Re prior to irradiation resulted in an increase in the formation of endogenous spleen colonies. The frequency of radiation-induced apoptosis in intestinal crypt cells was also reduced by pretreatment with PG, PD, Rb2, Rc, Rd, Re and Rg1. In experiments on the effects of the individual ginsenosides, the rank order of activity was Rc > Rd > Rg1 > Rb2 > Re > Rb1 on intestinal crypt survival assay, Re > Rb2 > Rd > Rg1 > Rb1 > Rc on the spleen colony formation assay, and Rg1 > Re > Rd > Rc Rb 2 > Rb1 on inhibiting the death of cells caused by apoptosis. The results indicated that Rc, Rd and Re may have a major radioprotective effect in mice irradiated with high and low doses of radiation. When the same experiments were performed using PD and PT, it was observed that most of the inhibitory effects came from PD rather than PT.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)392-395
Number of pages4
JournalPhytotherapy Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2006


  • Apoptosis
  • Crypt survival
  • Endogenous spleen colony
  • Ginsenosides
  • Panax ginseng
  • Radiation


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