Chiang Tang Tong Fu (CTTF), a Chinese herbal supplement, has been therapeutically employed as a laxative for constipation and for lowering the blood glucose level in diabetes. Recently, it has become widely used as a supplement for weight control. Despite its wide applications, its mode of action remains elusive. Here we report that CTTF contains Emodin and Physcion, which could account for many of its therapeutic effects including laxative effect and anti-diabetic function. Interestingly, in addition to the known effects, we have found that CTTF has an additional effect, namely, protection against glutamate-induced cell injury as demonstrated in PC 12 cells, suggesting that CTTF could also have a neuroprotective function.
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