The aim of this study was to point out the potential of tartary buckwheat on vascular functions. A nonabsorbed fraction of hot-water extract of tartary buckwheat on a SP70 column (TBSP-T), which was free from rutin, was used for this aim. In a contractile experiment using Sprague-Dawley rat thoracic aorta rings contracted by 1.0 μM phenylephrine (PE) or 50 mM KCl, TBSP-T evoked a significant vasorelaxation [EC50 (mg/ml): PE; 2.2; KCl, 1.9]. By a further fractionation of TBSP-T by liquid-liquid partitioning into basic, neutral and acidic fractions, a marked enhancement of vasorelaxation effect was observed only for acidic fraction (EC50, 0.25 mg/ml). The action of acidic fraction was significantly attenuated in endothelium-denuded aortic rings and in the presence of nitric oxide synthase inhibitor, NG-monomethyl-l-arginine (100 μM). The fraction also enhanced the cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) production in aortic rings contracted with PE [cGMP (pmol/mg protein): PE, 7.2±2.3; PE+Acidic fraction, 35±8]. These results indicate that acidic fraction could mediate NO/cGMP pathways, thereby exerting endothelium-dependent vasorelaxation action. In conclusion, tartary buckwheat was proven to regulate vascular tones and have latent acidic candidates except for rutin.
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