Preliminary study on chinese drug- induced apoptosis of thyrocytes in graves’ disease

  • Jiajun Zhao
  • Ling Gao
  • Xinqi Liu
  • Xueping Liu


Objective: To investigate the cellular and molecular mechanisms of some Chinese drugs on apoptosis of thyrocytes in Graves’ disease.Methods: Two to ten weeks before and after using Chinese drugs on 13 Graves’ disease patients with anti-thyroid drugs, patients’ thyroid tissue was aspired with percutaneous puncturing needle. The effects of some Chinese drugs on thyrocytes was studied by applying cell morphology (stained with nuclear fast red, NFR), flow cytometry (stained with propidium iodide, PI), and terminal uridine deoxynucleotidyl end-labelling (TUNEL) technique (alkaline phosphatase and CBIP/NBT, NFR). The size of thyroid gland was measured by color Doppler ultrasonography.Results: After Chinese drug treatment, compared with single anti-thyroid drug group, the size of thyroid was significantly reduced (P<0.01). The apoptosis of thyrocytes can be observed by cell morphology such as chromatin condensation and nuclear fragmentation. The apoptosis rate is 18.66% ±20.01% (n=13) in anti-thyroid drugs plus Chinese drugs group, 2.11% ±1.78% (n= 13) in single anti-thyroid drug group (P<0. 01). For up to 2–10 weeks, more TUNEL-positive cells were found after treatment with Chinese drugs than those treated with anti-thyroid drug alone.Conclusion: Some Chinese drugs when used in combination with anti-thyroid drugs in treating Graves’ disease could induce apoptosis of thyrocytes.

Key Words

Graves’ disease thyrocytes apoptosis Chinese drugs 


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Copyright information

© The Chinese Journal of Integrated Traditional and Western Medicine Press 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jiajun Zhao
    • 1
  • Ling Gao
    • 1
  • Xinqi Liu
    • 1
  • Xueping Liu
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EndocrinologyShandong Provincial HospitalJinan

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