Ninjin-Youei-To (NYT; Ren-Shen-Yang-Rong-Tang in Chinese) is a traditional herbal formula, which is widely used in Japan, Korea and China to modulate physiological immunity. The effects of oral administration of NYT on cytokine production from splenocytes were investigated in both C57BL/6 and BALB/c mice in which Th1 and Th2 were dominant, respectively. Splenocytes from C57BL/6 and BALB/c mice, which took NYT orally for four weeks, were cultured with anti-mouse CD3 mAb, and the supernatant was examined for cytokine production using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Administration of NYT to C57BL/6 mice, increased the production of interleukin-4 (IL-4) significantly, and slightly decreased interferon-γ (IFN-γ) production from splenocytes. In contrast, the same treatment significantly increased IFN-γ secretion from splenocytes of BALB/c mice. No remarkable changes of IL-12 production from splenocytes were observed in either strain of mice. These results suggest that oral administration of NYT ameliorates the excessive inclination of Th1 and Th2 type cytokine production, and NYT may provide a beneficial effects for the treatment of diseases caused by a skewed Th1-Th2 balance in the immune system.
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