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© 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved. Ethnopharmacological relevance Artemisia dracunculus L. (Russian tarragon) is a perennial herb belonging to the family Compositae and has a history of medicinal use in humans, particularly for treatment of diabetes. Aim of the study: In this study a defined plant extract from A. dracunculus L. (termed PMI-5011) is used to improve beta(β) cells function and maintain β cell number in pancreatic islets as an alternative drug approach for successful treatment of diabetes. Materials and methods Mouse and human pancreatic beta cells were treated with defined plant extract of A. dracunculus L. (PMI-5011) to understand the mechanism(s) that influence beta cell function and β cell number. Results We found that the PMI-5011 enhances insulin release from primary β cells, isolated mouse and human islets and it maintains β cell number. Insulin released by PMI-5011 is associated with the activation of AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), and protein kinase B (PKB). Furthermore, PMI-5011 suppresses LPS/INFγ-induced inflammation and inflammatory mediator(s) in macrophages. PMI-5011 inhibited Nitric oxide (NO) production and expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) at the protein level and also attenuated pro-inflammatory cytokine (IL-6) production in macrophages. Conclusion PMI-5011 has potential therapeutic value for diabetes treatment via increasing insulin release from β cells and decreases capacity of macrophages to combat inflammation.

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Journal of Ethnopharmacology

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