Background and Objective: Swertia mussotii Franch, also known as “Zangyinchen”, is
one of a Tibetan traditional herb used for treatment of liver diseases over thousands of years at
Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, has been confirmed to be hepatoprotective. However, the underlying
mechanism is largely unknown.
Materials and Methods: In this study, we evaluated the effect of S. mussotii treatment in a carbon
tetrachloride-induced acute liver injury rat model by examining the serum alanine
aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, total bilirubin levels and performing histological
observations of the liver tissues. Meanwhile, the metabolomics analysis was used to explore the
molecular mechanism of S. mussotii treatment by high performance liquid chromatography tandem
Results: The results showed that S. mussotii treatment could effectively improve the serum alanine
aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, total bilirubin in acute liver injury rat model.
Histological observation showed that S. mussotii treatment could effectively alleviate liver injury.
Moreover, the metabolomics analysis showed that S. mussotii treatment could normalize the levels
of many fatty acid metabolism related metabolites. And the results of pathway analysis showed
that these metabolites significantly enriched in fatty acid biosynthesis pathway (myristic acid,
dodecanoic acid and capric acid) and linoleic acid metabolism pathway (13-OxoODE).
Conclusion: The results indicated that S. mussotii treatment could significantly improve acute liver
injury through affecting the pathways related to lipid metabolism.