The aim of the present investigation was to investigate whether an aqueous extract ofBuddleja officinalis(ABO), a traditional Korean herbal medicine, suppresses the endothelial extracellular matrix degradation under high glucose condition. The incubation with high concentration of glucose (25 mM) increased significantly matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2/-9 expressions and activities in primary cultured human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC). Pretreatment with ABO decreased high glucose-induced increase of MMP-2/-9 activities in a dose-dependent manner. Real time qRT-PCR revealed that high glucose-induced MMP-2/-9 mRNA expression levels were attenuated by pretreatment with ABO. High glucose-induced MCP-1 and IL-8 mRNA expression levels also decreased by ABO. ABO decreased high glucose-induced hydrogen peroxide production, oxidative stress marker. These results provide new insights into the pathophysiological mechanisms for anti-inflammatory properties of ABO in vascular diseases associated with diabetes mellitus. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.