Cordyceps sinensis protects against liver and heart injuries in a rat model of chronic kidney disease: A metabolomic analysis

Xia Liu, Fang Zhong, Xu Long Tang, Fu Lin Lian, Qiao Zhou, Shan Mai Guo, Jia Fu Liu, Peng Sun, Xu Hao, Ying Lu, Wei Ming Wang, Nan Chen, Nai Xia Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Aim: To test the hypothesis that the traditional Chinese medicine Cordyceps sinensis could improve the metabolic function of extrarenal organs to achieve its anti-chronic kidney disease (CKD) effects. Methods: Male SD rats were divided into CKD rats (with 5/6-nephrectomy), CKD rats treated with Cordyceps sinensis (4 mg·kg-1·d-1, po), and sham-operated rats. After an 8-week treatment, metabolites were extracted from the hearts and livers of the rats, and then subjected to 1H-NMR-based metabolomic analysis. Results: Oxidative stress, energy metabolism, amino acid and protein metabolism and choline metabolism were considered as links between CKD and extrarenal organ dysfunction. Within the experimental period of 8 weeks, the metabolic disorders in the liver were more pronounced than in the heart, suggesting that CKD-related extrarenal organ dysfunctions occurred sequentially rather than simultaneously. Oral administration of Cordyceps sinensis exerted statistically significant rescue effects on the liver and heart by reversely regulating levels of those metabolites that are typically perturbed in CKD. Conclusion: Oral administration of Cordyceps sinensis significantly attenuates the liver and heart injuries in CKD rats. The 1H NMR-based metabolomic approach has provided a systematic view for understanding of CKD and the drug treatment, which can also be used to elucidate the mechanisms of action of other traditional Chinese medicines.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)697-706
Number of pages10
JournalActa Pharmacologica Sinica
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 May 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Cordyceps sinensis
  • chronic kidney disease
  • heart injury
  • liver injury
  • metabolomics
  • nuclear magnetic resonance
  • traditional Chinese medicine


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