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Translating traditional herbal formulas into modern drugs: A network-based analysis of Xiaoyao decoction
Zhang,Daiyan1; Zhang,Yun1; Gao,Yan1; Chai,Xingyun2; Pi,Rongbiao3; Chan,Ging1; Hu,Yuanjia1
Source PublicationChinese Medicine (United Kingdom)

Background: Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) encompasses numerous herbal formulas which play critical therapeutic roles through "multi-components, multi-targets and multi-pathways" mechanisms. Exploring the interaction among these mechanisms can certainly help to depict the core therapeutic function of herbal formulas. Xiaoyao decoction (XYD) is one of the most well-known traditional Chinese medicine formulas which has been widely applied to treat various diseases. In this study, taking XYD as an example, we proposed a network pharmacology-based method to identify the main therapeutic targets of this herbal concoctions. Methods: Chemical data of XYD were retrieved from the Traditional Chinese Medicine Systems Pharmacology Database (TCMSP), Traditional Chinese Medicines Integrated Database (TCMID) and Compound Reference Database (CRD) and screened oral bioavailability attributes from SwissADME using Veber's filter. Targets of sample chemicals were identified using the online tool similarity ensemble approach (SEA), and pathways were enriched using STRING database. On the basis of targets-pathways interactions from the enrichment, a "targets-pathways-targets" (TPT) network was constructed. In the TPT network, the importance of each target was calculated by the declining value of network efficiency, which represents the influential strength of a specific set-off target on the whole network. Network-based predictive results were statistically validated with existing experimental evidence. Results: The TPT network was comprised of 279 nodes and 6549 edges. The declining value of network efficiency of the sample targets was significantly correlated with their involvement frequency in existing studies of XYD using Spearman's test (p < 0.001). The top 10% of candidate targets, such as AKT1, PIK3R1, NFKB1 and RELA, etc., were chosen as XYD's main therapeutic targets, which further show pharmacological functions synergistically through 11 main pathways. These pathways are responsible for endocrine, nutritional or metabolic diseases, neoplasms and diseases of the nervous system, etc. Conclusions: The network pharmacology-based approach in the present study shows promising potential for identifying the main therapeutic targets from TCM formulas. This study provides valuable information for TCM researchers and clinicians for better understanding the main therapeutic targets and therapeutic roles of herbal decoctions in clinical settings.

KeywordNetwork Pharmacology Traditional Chinese Medicine Xiaoyao Decoction
URLView the original
Indexed BySCIE
WOS Research AreaIntegrative & Complementary Medicine ; Pharmacology & Pharmacy
WOS SubjectIntegrative & Complementary Medicine ; Pharmacology & Pharmacy
WOS IDWOS:000521491900001
Scopus ID2-s2.0-85082128523
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Cited Times [WOS]:3   [WOS Record]     [Related Records in WOS]
Document TypeJournal article
CollectionUniversity of Macau
Corresponding AuthorChan,Ging; Hu,Yuanjia
Affiliation1.State Key Laboratory of Quality Research in Chinese Medicine,Institute of Chinese Medical Sciences,University of Macau,Macao
2.Modern Research Center for Traditional Chinese Medicine,School of Chinese Materia Medica,Beijing University of Chinese Medicine,Beijing,100029,China
3.School of Pharmaceutical Sciences,Sun Yat-Sen University,Guangzhou,510006,China
First Author AffilicationInstitute of Chinese Medical Sciences
Corresponding Author AffilicationInstitute of Chinese Medical Sciences
Recommended Citation
GB/T 7714
Zhang,Daiyan,Zhang,Yun,Gao,Yan,et al. Translating traditional herbal formulas into modern drugs: A network-based analysis of Xiaoyao decoction[J]. Chinese Medicine (United Kingdom),2020,15(1).
APA Zhang,Daiyan,Zhang,Yun,Gao,Yan,Chai,Xingyun,Pi,Rongbiao,Chan,Ging,&Hu,Yuanjia.(2020).Translating traditional herbal formulas into modern drugs: A network-based analysis of Xiaoyao decoction.Chinese Medicine (United Kingdom),15(1).
MLA Zhang,Daiyan,et al."Translating traditional herbal formulas into modern drugs: A network-based analysis of Xiaoyao decoction".Chinese Medicine (United Kingdom) 15.1(2020).
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