Triptolide: A Potential Drug for Polycystic Kidney Disease

by Medindia Content Team on  March 6, 2007 at 5:10 PM Drug News   - G J E 4
Triptolide: A Potential Drug for Polycystic Kidney Disease
A treatment for polycystic kidney disease(PKD), a leading cause of fatal kidney failure worldwide, has been identified by a research team led by Yale biochemist Craig Crews, according to a report in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Over 12 million people worldwide suffer from PKD, a genetic disorder that causes uncontrolled growth of cells lining tubules in the kidneys, and results in the formation of many, large fluid-filled cysts in the kidneys.

"Unfortunately, aside from kidney transplantation, there has been no cure for PKD, nor has there been a suitable drug treatment to slow its progression," said Crews, associate professor of chemistry, molecular, cellular & developmental biology and pharmacology. "We hope that is about to change," he said.

The mesh of Traditional Chinese Medicines (TCMs), current advances in chemistry and fundamental processes of developmental biology and health are a research focus for Crews. According to him, a roadblock in the path to TCMs as a source for new medical treatments is lack of understanding the biology and chemistry of how they work.

Triptolide is a potent, biologically active compound isolated from the medicinal 'Thunder God Vine' Tripterygium wilfordii Hook F. The TCM tea Lei Gong Teng made from this plant has been used for centuries, as a therapeutic against cancer, inflammation, and auto-immune diseases. Crews and colleagues showed that triptolide causes cell growth arrest in certain cell types.

Normal kidney tubule cells have a built in switch for regulating their growth — two proteins, PKD1 and PKD2, located on a bristle-like cilium that bends in response to fluid flow across the cell. During kidney development, cells destined to line a kidney tubule grow and divide until the tubule is formed, as sensed by fluid flow in the tubule. Fluid flow bends the primary cilium, giving a signal to stop cell growth. PKD is caused by a mutation in the PKD1 or PKD2 gene causing the cells to miss the "stop growing" signal, allowing them to keep growing, and thus generating a cyst.

In collaboration with Stefan Somlo, M.D., Chief of Nephrology at Yale School of Medicine, who discovered the PKD2 gene, triptolide was tested in a mouse model of PKD. Both fewer and smaller kidney cysts formed in mice lacking PKD1 when they were treated with therapeutic amounts of triptolide.

"Our research shows that triptolide, an active ingredient of the TCM Lei Gong Teng, markedly decreases cyst formation in a mouse model of this most common genetic lethal kidney disease," Crews said. "Our results offer a novel therapeutic approach to this deadly disease and highlight the potential of TCM as pharmaceutical sources."

Source: YALE University

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iam suffering from bilateral polycystic kidneys for last 25 yrs and i am in late forties. i have had bouts of hematuria off and on during and after my second pregnancy. i do get pain once in a while in the lumbar region and a bout of mild hematuria if i travel on rough terrain. my kidney size is now 13cms bilaterally my other parameters like blood pressure and blood urea and serum creatinine are normal. i try to keep a check on urinary tract infection and take lots of fluids and limited protein. i want some medicine that can arrest the progress of this disease. if u can help me or tell me how some medicine can help me and the latest developments in this disease i will be grateful
amidadwal Thursday, November 27, 2008
Where can I buy triptolide or the original herbs in Sri Lanka/Malaysia?
guest Saturday, October 25, 2008
Where can I buy triptolide?
guest Wednesday, April 9, 2008
I know a company that may be able to help you re. triptolite.
guest Wednesday, June 6, 2007
Where can I buy triptolide?
guest Saturday, March 24, 2007
Please inform where I can get this drug or the original chinese herb in India
guest Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Did you ever find anything out? I found triptolide but I don't have any idea what the dosage would be. It's 80 dollars for one mg. 300 dollars for 5mg.
guest Thursday, August 20, 2009
where did you find the triptolide? can you provide a website or your source? many thanks.
guest Wednesday, August 26, 2009

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