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Caspase-11 is a key regulator of proinflammatory cytokine IL-1beta maturation and pathological apoptosis. Caspase-11 is not expressed in most tissues under normal condition, but highly inducible upon pathological stimulation such as in the presence of lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Here, we describe the identification and characterization of wedelolactone, a(More)
The seeds and one to three years old plants of Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng C.A. Meyer) were analyzed for their free amino acid contents. The neuro-excitatory beta-ODAP (beta-N-oxalyl-L-alpha,beta-diaminopropionic acid), suggested to be the cause of the crippling neurolathyrism, was the major component in the seed extract (70% of the total free amino acids(More)
Kampo (Japanese traditional herbal) medicines have been produced by combining multiple crude drugs, almost all of plant origin but with some of animal or mineral origin, and contain a great many substances. Their effect is a combination of the various interactions of the constituent substances, whether they are enhancing, synergistic or suppressive. Kampo(More)
Kampo (Japanese herbal) medicines, produced by combining multiple crude drugs, almost all of plant origin but with some of animal or mineral origin, contain great many substances. Since Kampo medicine results from the combination of many substances, their effect is a combination of the various interactions of the constituent substances. It has been(More)
Six lignans including a new lignan (1), beta-sitosterol glucopyranoside and phenylpropanoids were isolated from the whole plants of Balanophora abbreviata Bl. (Balanophoraceae). Their structures were determined by NMR, MS analysis and other spectroscopic methods. Lignans (1, 2 and 4) showed potent inhibitory activities on the lipopolysaccharide(More)
An unusual amino acid, L-methionine sulfoximine (1), has been isolated from the fresh seeds of Cnestis palala (Lour.) Merr. [Connaraceae]. The absolute configuration of the natural sulfoximine (1) was confirmed to be 2(S)-methionine S(S)-sulfoximine [(2S,SS)-2-amino-4-(S-methylsulfonimidoyl)-n-butanoic acid] by comparison of the [alpha]D value and IR(More)
The enzymatic breakdown of beta-(isoxazolin-5-on-2-yl)-L-alanine (BIA) with formation of 2,3-diaminopropionic acid (DAPA), the direct precursor of the neurotoxin beta-ODAP in Lathyrus sativus, was confirmed in vitro. Some properties of the enzyme responsible for the biosynthesis of DAPA are described.
Neurolathyrism is a motor neuron disease caused by the overconsumption of grass pea (Lathyrus sativus L.) containing L-β-ODAP. The precise mechanism to cause motor neuron degeneration has yet to be elucidated, but should agree with the epidemiological backgrounds. Considering the amino acid content of the legume, and the epidemiological link with prolonged(More)
Seeds of Pisum sativum L. cv Finale and Lathyrus odoratus L. cv Spencer were germinated aseptically in moistened sand in the dark. At several stages, the amino acid composition of the exudate and of the corresponding roots was analyzed. A number of common amino acids, including homoserine, were exuded by the growing seedling root in an early stage and were(More)