Physiological Research, p. S573-S581, 2020
Dihydromyricetin (DHM) is a natural flavonoid showing several health promoting effects such as protective activity during severe alcohol intoxication. The mechanism underlying the effects of DHM on alcohol metabolism is virtually unknown. The present paper is focused on clarifying the role of DHM in the liver alcohol elimination at its molecular level. First, impact of DHM on alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) activity in vitro and the enzyme induction in vivo was examined. Neither the ADH activity nor the enzyme expression were influenced by DHM. Next, the effect of DHM during alcohol intoxication were studied on primary hepatocytes isolated from EtOH-premedicated and untreated rats. The viability of cells exposed to alcohol, estimated based on the released enzymes, alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST), was slightly affected by DHM. Although the expected hepatoprotective effect of DHM was not fully achieved, DHM (in a concentration manner) proved to reduce the level of ROS/RNS in hepatocytes. However, no change in the rate of alcohol metabolism in vivo was found when rats were administered with a single or repeated dose of ethanol supplemented with DHM. In conclusion, the proposed positive effect of DHM during alcohol intoxication has not been proven. Moreover, there is no effect of DHM on the alcohol metabolism. The “hoped-for” DHM hepatoprotective activity can be attributed to the reduction of ROS/RNS levels in cells.