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Potential Mechanism of Maslinic Acid against Hypolipidemia Based on Network Pharmacology and Molecular Docking Integration Strategy

Author(s): Fei-Fei Che, Yi Liang, Hong Li, Wen Chen, Xiao Lin Li and Li Zhi Zhao*
Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, The Affiliated Traditional Chinese Medicine Hospital of Southwest Medical University, 1Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, College of Integrated Chinese and Western Medicine, Southwest Medical University, Luzhou, Sichuan 646000, China

Correspondence Address:
Li Zhi Zhao, Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, The Affiliated Traditional Chinese Medicine Hospital of Southwest Medical University, China, E-mail:

Maslinic acid is a pentacyclic triterpenoid acid. Recent research has shown that it has various biological activities such as anti-tumor, hypoglycaemic and hypolipidemic. Among them, the hypolipidemic effect is prominent and this study aims to further explore its mechanism of action in the treatment of hyperlipidemia. The chemical structure of maslinic acid was obtained from PubChem. Based on its chemical structure, the bioavailability and drug-like properties of maslinic acid were analyzed using Swiss absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion and its potential targets were obtained from SwissTargetPrediction and PharmMapper. Then, the differentially expressed genes between hyperlipidemia patients and the health group were analyzed through the gene expression omnibus data set, and the related targets of hyperlipidemia were complemented using DrugBank, online Mendelian inheritance in man, GeneCards, DisGeNET and therapeutic target databases. Then, the protein-protein interaction network was constructed, the CytoNCA plugin and VarElect were used to screen core targets and metascape was used to systematically analyze the core targets and explore the mechanism. Finally, molecular docking showcased the interaction model. A total of 288 maslinic acid targets and 289 hyperlipidemia-related targets were collected and 18 potential therapeutic targets were found. The enrichment analysis results further systematically explained the effect of maslinic acid on hyperlipidemia. Maslinic acid can treat hyperlipidemia through complex interactions in which the regulation of core genes including albumin, peroxisome proliferator activated receptor alpha and apolipoprotein, and the regulation of peroxisome proliferator activated receptor signaling pathway play a major role.

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