Call for Papers  

Article Details

Research Article

Network Pharmacology and <i>In vitro</i> Experimental Verification to Explore the Mechanism of Chaiqin Qingning Capsule in the Treatment of Pain

[ Vol. 30 , Issue. 4 ]


Hongjin Gao, Zhengwei Chen, Buliduhong Halihaman, Lianzhan Huang, Zhen Wang and Xuansheng Ding*   Pages 278 - 294 ( 17 )


Background: Chaiqin Qingning capsule (CQQNC) has been used to relieve pain in practice. However, the active components, pain targets, and molecular mechanisms for pain control are unclear.

Objective: To explore the active components and potential mechanisms of the analgesic effect of CQQNC through network pharmacology and in vitro experiments.

Methods: The main active components and the corresponding targets of CQQNC were screened from the TCMSP and the SwissTargetPrediction databases. Pain-related targets were selected in the OMIM, Gene- Cards, and DrugBank databases. These targets were intersected to obtain potential analgesic targets. The analgesic targets were imported into the STRING and DAVID databases for protein-protein interaction (PPI), gene ontology (GO) function enrichment and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway enrichment analyses. Cytoscape software (V3.7.1) was used to construct an active component-intersection network. Finally, the key components were docked with the core targets. The analgesic mechanism of CQQNC was verified by RAW264.7 cell experiment.

Results: 30 active CQQNC components, 617 corresponding targets, and 3,214 pain-related target genes were found. The main active components were quercetin, kaempferol, and chenodeoxycholic acid etc. The key targets were ALB, AKT1, TNF, IL6, TP53, IL1B, and SRC. CQQNC can exert an analgesic effect through PI3K-Akt, MAPK signaling pathways, etc. Molecular docking showed that these active components had good binding activities with key targets. The results of in vitro experiments showed that CQQNC could exert antiinflammatory and analgesic effects through MAPK/AKT/NF-kB signaling pathways.

Conclusion: CQQNC exerts pain control through inhibiting MAPK/AKT/NF-kB signaling pathways.


Chaiqin Qingning capsule, pain, network pharmacology, molecular docking, in vitro experiments, molecular mechanisms.


Read Full-Text article