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Dietary supplement and personal care products aiming to provide protection from air pollution have been of great interest for decades. Epidemiology demonstrated that PM10 and PM2.5 particulate matter (PM) are an actual threat to public health worldwide, but the detailed processes of how these particles attack the cells are not fully understood. Here, we report that the measurement of intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) using human respiratory or skin cells can illustrate pollutant challenges by triggering Ca2+ influx in these cells. This signal was generated by proteinase-activated receptor-2 (PAR-2), confirmed by competition analyses, and Phellodendron amurense bark extract (PAE), a traditional medicine, was able to control the response and expression of PAR-2. Increase in proinflammatory cytokines and decrease in cell adhesion components could suggest a severe damage status by air pollutants and protection by PAE. Finally, we identified 4-O-feruloylquinic acid (FQA), an active compound of PAE, showing the same effects on Ca2+ influx and PAR-2 regulation. The results presented here should help understand the underlying mechanism of PM insults and the beneficial effect of standardized PAE as dietary supplement or cosmetical ingredient.


Jiyoung Choi, Mi Yeon Moon, Gi Yeon Han, Moon Sik Chang, Dongki Yang, Joonseok Cha. Phellodendron amurense Extract Protects Human Keratinocytes from PM2.5-Induced Inflammation via PAR-2 Signaling. Biomolecules. 2020 Dec 28;11(1)

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PMID: 33379296

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