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Metabolic Analysis of Antiviral Effects of Baicalein against Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infection Using Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometer

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Preprint abstract
Xin Meng, Xiao-Min Zhang, Tong Xie, Cun-Si Shen, Hui-Hui Xie, Li-Na Du, Jin-Jun Shan, Shou-Chuan Wang
Author Affiliation(s)
Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Pediatric Respiratory Disease, Institute of Pediatrics, Nanjing University of Chinese Medicine, Nanjing, 210023, China (Xin Meng, Tong Xie, Cun-Si Shen, Jin-Jun Shan,  Shou-Chuan Wang); Basic Medicine College, Changchun University of Chinese Medicine, Changchun, 130117,China (Xiao-Min Zhang); Department of Pediatrics, Zhejiang Provincial Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Hangzhou, 310006, China (Hui-Hui Xie); Beijing Children's Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing, 100000, China (Li-Na Du)
Corresponding Author(s)
Shou-Chuan Wang (E-mail:
Subject Areas
Analytical chemistry; Biochemistry; Infectious diseases; Medicine; Pharmacology; Physical chemistry; Virology

Baicalein, as one of the principal components in the roots of Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi, has effect against infection of various viruses including respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). However, its antiviral mechanisms remain unclear. In this study we investigated the antiviral effects of baicalein against RSV in vitro and in vivo using a GC-MS based metabolomics. Cell samples and and plasma were collected from the normal control group, and RSV-infected groups treated with or without baicalein. The samples were analyzed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometer (GC-MS), and their metabolites were identified with the NIST library and standard references. The acquired data were further subjected to multivariate data analysis to screen the metabolites altered significantly, and the associated pathways were constructed using MetaboAnalyst 3.0. The results showed that, In vitro, serine, L-aspartic acid, L-glutamic acid, citric acid and glycine decreased during RSV infection and resumed to their normal levels using baicalein. In vivo, lactic acid, urea and 1,5-anhydro-d-sorbitol significantly increased, and glycine, glutamine, D-glucose decreased during RSV infection. After administration of baicalein, the metabolic imbalance was restored. In vitro and in vivo, glycine and glutamine (glutamic acid) consistently decreased during RSV infection, and increased following treatment with baicalein. These data suggested that the antiviral effect of baicalein is possibly associated with restoring the metabolic disorder caused by RSV infection.

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