Wang, Y., Zhu, J. X., Kong, L. D., Yang, C., Cheng, C. H. K. & Zhang, X.
Institute of Functional Biomolecule, State Key Laboratory of Pharmaceutical Biotechnology, School of Life Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing.
In this study we have investigated the effects of administration of procyanidins from grape seeds on serum uric acid levels in a model of hyperuricaemia in mice pretreated with oxonate, as well as the xanthine dehydrogenase and xanthine oxidase activities in mouse liver in vivo. The procyanidins, when orally administered to the oxonate-pretreated hyperuricaemic mice, were able to elicit a dose-dependent hypouricaemic effect. At a dose of 400 mg/kg for 3 days, the serum urate levels of the oxonate-pretreated mice were not different from the normal mice. In addition, the hepatic activities of xanthine dehydrogenase and xanthine oxidase in the procyanidins-treated mice were found to decrease significantly. However, the hypouricaemic effects observed in the experimental animals did not seem to parallel the changes in xanthine dehydrogenase and xanthine oxidase activities, implying that the procyanidins might be acting via other mechanisms apart from simple inhibition of enzyme activities. Furthermore, the procyanidin-treated animals exhibited normal growth while the allopurinol-treated animals exhibited some retarded growth. These results demonstrated for the first time that the procyanidins from grape seeds possess in vivo urate-lowering activities. The potential application of these natural compounds in the treatment of hyperuricaemia is discussed.