J Hepatol. 1994 Oct;21(4):601-9.
Effects of glycyrrhizin on hepatitis B surface antigen: a biochemical and morphological study.
Takahara T, Watanabe A, Shiraki K.
Glycyrrhizin, a major component of a herb (licorice), has been widely used to treat chronic hepatitis B in Japan. This substance improves liver function with occasional complete recovery from hepatitis; its effects on the secretion of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) were examined in vitro. Glycyrrhizin suppressed the secretion of HBsAg and accumulated it dose-dependently in PLC/PRF/5 cells. Its action was further analyzed and determined in the HBsAg-expression system using the varicella-zoster virus. Glycyrrhizin suppressed the secretion of HBsAg, resulting in its accumulation in the cytoplasmic vacuoles in the Golgi apparatus area. HBsAg labeled with 35S-methionine and cysteine accumulated in the cells and its secretion was suppressed dose-dependently in glycyrrhizin-treated culture. The secreted HBsAg was modified by N-linked and O-linked glycans but its sialylation was inhibited dose-dependently by glycyrrhizin. Thus glycyrrhizin suppressed the intracellular transport of HBsAg at the trans-Golgi area after O-linked glycosylation and before its sialylation. HBsAg particles were mainly observed on the cell surface in the glycyrrhizin-treated culture but not in the untreated culture. This suggests that asialylation of HBsAg particles resulted in the novel surface nature of glycyrrhizin-treated HBsAg particles. We elucidated the unique mechanism of action of glycyrrhizin on HBsAg processing, intracellular transport, and secretion.
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Here's the link http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7814808
Hi and thanks for sharing the info. Agree with you that Glycyrrhizin, has been tried for hepatitis B. Licorice extract is that portion of the licorice root that is, after maceration, extracted by boiling water. The extract can be further purified by filtration and by treatment with acids and ethyl alcohol. This is a flavoring agent and FDA has approved this with certain limitations. Further scientific studies are needed to study the effectiveness. Regards.
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