Correlating microscopic characteristics and biologically active components for evaluating the quality of Chinese medicinal materials

  • ZHAO, Zhongzhen (PI)

Project: Research project

Project Details


As Chinese medicinal materials (CMMs) are increasingly used worldwide, evaluating the quality and ensuring the correct identify of CMMs has become an internationally critical issue. Although there are a variety of methods available to authenticate CMMs, ranging from simple morphological examination to DNA analysis, no method to date has been able to both identify the source species and evaluate the quality of a CMM sample. Microscopic identification has been demonstrated to be an effective means for identifying the source species of CMMs. Previous studies have been carried out on the correlation between quantities of microscopic characteristics and chemical components by microscopic quantitative method and high performance liquid chromatography. But the amount of any given microscopic character is often miscalculated, and the target characters are selected without consideration of any relationship with active components. In this study, a systematic investigation will be carried out to reveal the relationship between both the identity and amounts of active components and microscopic characteristics in five common but chemically very different CMMs. First, the chemical profiles of different cells or tissue regions of CMMs will be analyzed by means of laser microdissection and ultra-high performance liquid chromatography quadrupole/time of flight-mass spectrometry (UPLC-QTOF-MS). We expect the results to reveal a consistent correlation between active components and microscopic characteristics of CMMs. Then this correlation will be further validated by quantity target microscopic characteristics containing active components in CMMs by combining X-ray quantitative phase contrast micro-CT with advanced 3-dimensional imaging processing and determining the contents of active components in various samples of CMMs by UPLC. The validated relationship between active components and microscopic characteristics will be used for evaluating the quality of CMMs by assessing the quantity of the specific cells or tissues where those components are found. The results will enable us to identify the source species and evaluate the quality of CMMs simultaneously by microscopic characteristics. The present study will make evaluating the quality of CMM much more practical.
Effective start/end date1/12/1530/11/18


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