Analysis of bioactive components and pharmacokinetic study of herb–herb interactions in the traditional Chinese patent medicine Tongmai Yangxin Pill

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Tongmai Yangxin (TMYX) Pill is a traditional Chinese patent medicine, composed of eleven Chinese medicinal herbs. It has been used to treat coronary heart disease for several decades. In this study, six male Sprague-Dawley rats were dosed orally with TMYX methanol extract, and a serum pharmacochemistry technique was used to screen absorbed bioactive compounds by UPLC/Q-TOF-MS. By comparing MS spectra to the published literature data, 40 bioactive components were identified. The results indicated that almost 45% of the absorbed compounds were from Radix Glycyrrhizae (GC). Subsequently, a reliable HPLC method was used to determine the concentrations of liquiritin, liquiritigenin, isoliquiritigenin, glycyrrhizic acid, and glycyrrhetinic acid in rat plasma following oral administration of GC or the combination of GC and Ramulus Cinnamomi (GZ). The results showed that GZ enhanced the absorption of four bioactive components: liquiritigenin, isoliquiritigenin, glycyrrhizic acid, and glycyrrhetinic acid. The data demonstrate that herb combination in TMYX Pill exhibit a synergistic action.

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