Jian-Pi-Yi-Shen, a Chinese herbal decoction, found to promote kidney health

Researchers at Guangzhou University of Chinese Medicine and The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology have found that Jian-Pi-Yi-Shen, a Chinese herbal decoction, can improve chronic kidney disease (CKD) associated with anemia. In the study, published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, they looked at the effect of Jian-Pi-Yi-Shen on the expressions of erythropoietin and pro-inflammatory cytokines in cultured cells.

Jian-Pi-Yi-Shen is a Chinese herbal formula that has been clinically prescribed for chronic kidney disease associated-anemia. It is composed of eight medicinal herbs, which include:

  • Astragali Radix (Huang qi) – dried astragalus root
  • Atractylodis Macrocephalae Rhizoma (Bai zhu) – the dry rootstock of largehead atractylodes rhizome
  • Dioscoreae Rhizoma (Shan yao) – Chinese yam
  • Cistanches Herba (Rou cong-rong) – desert ginseng
  • Amomi Fructus Rotundus (Dou kou) – dried round cardamom fruit
  • Salviae Miltiorrhizae Radix et Rhizoma (Dan shen) – roots and rhizomes of the red sage plant
  • Rhei Radix et Rhizoma (Da huang) – roots and tubers of the rhubarb plant
  • Glycyrrhizae Radix et Rhizoma Praeparata cum Melle (Zhi gan cao) – licorice root fried in honey

For this study, researchers applied standardized herbal extracts of Jian-Pi-Yi-Shen onto cultured cells for 24 to 48 hours. They found that the decoction promoted the production of the erythropoietin, which plays an essential role in the formation and production of red blood cell. Inadequate production of erythropoietin is the most common cause of chronic kidney disease associated with anemia. Additionally, the treatment activated the hypoxia response element-mediated transcriptional activity. Hypoxia-inducible factor signaling could enhance erythropoietin production in chronic kidney disease patients. These results substantiated the hematopoietic function of Jian-Pi-Yi-Shen.

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Moreover, Jian-Pi-Yi-Shen increased the expressions of pro-inflammatory cytokines, but at the same time inhibited the expression of lipopolysaccharide-induced cytokines, suggesting that it possessed bi-directional immune-modulatory roles. The regulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines expression under different scenarios in macrophages may support the clinical use of Jian-Pi-Yi-Shen for chronic kidney disease with a complication of immune deficiency.

The researchers of the study concluded that the Jian-Pi-Yi-Shen decoction can potentially enhance red blood cell production and regulate pro-inflammatory cytokines in chronic kidney disease associated-anemia.

More on chronic kidney disease

Chronic kidney disease is a condition that results in a gradual loss of kidney function over time. If the kidneys get worse, it can lead to the buildup of waste in the blood and make a person feel sick. It can also lead to other health complications, such as high blood pressure, anemia, weak bones, poor nutritional health, and nerve damage, as well as increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases. When the chronic kidney disease progresses, it may eventually result in kidney failure. In the U.S., 30 million people are already living with chronic kidney disease.

Early detection and treatment can usually stop the progression of CKD. Initial signs and symptoms include:

  • Difficulty catching your breath
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Itching
  • Loss of appetite
  • Muscle cramps
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Swelling in your feet and ankles
  • Either too much urine or not enough urine

If the kidneys suddenly stop working, you may experience one or more of these symptoms: back pain, diarrhea, fever, nosebleeds, pain in the abdomen, rash, and vomiting.

Taking active vitamin D can help people living with CKD get rid of toxic aluminum in their body. In addition, taking sodium bicarbonate or baking soda can help slow down the progression of chronic kidney disease.

Preventing chronic kidney disease

One of the best ways to prevent chronic kidney disease is to keep your blood sugar and blood pressure under control, as these two conditions are the most common causes of the disease. You can also ward off CKD by living a healthy lifestyle. Listed below are some tips on reducing the risk for kidney disease and the problems that cause it:

  • Adhere to a low-salt, low-fat diet
  • Exercise regularly for at least 30 minutes a day
  • Do not smoke or use tobacco
  • Limit alcohol consumption

Read more news stories and studies on other traditional Chinese medicines by going to ChineseMedicine.news.

Sources include:


Kidney.org 1

Kidney.org 2

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