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   2010| January-February  | Volume 2 | Issue 1  
    Online since March 13, 2010

 
 
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ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Profile of heavy metals in some medicinal plants from Ghana commonly used as components of herbal formulations
Kofi Annan, Asante Isaac Kojo, Asare Cindy, Asare-Nkansah Samuel, Bayor Marcel Tunkumgnen
January-February 2010, 2(1):41-44
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60579  PMID:21808538
The levels of some heavy metals in 27 medicinal plant species from Ghana were studied in order to evaluate their health implications. These plant species, especially those used in the treatment of diseases such as hypertension, diabetes and asthma may require long term usage. The metals were copper, zinc, iron, manganese, nickel and cadmium. Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry (wet digestion) was used for the analyses, and content of metals per sample was expressed as percent µg/g. Daily total intake of these metals is discussed based on the recommended daily intake of the medicinal plants or their corresponding formulations. From the results of the study zinc, copper and cadmium were present in all the plant species examined. Manganese was present in all species except V. amygdalina. Iron was found in all except five species (82%), whilst nickel was (rather rare) detected in only eight (30%) of the plant species. Significant variations in metal content existed (P<0.05) among the medicinal plant species with respect to the heavy metals evaluated. The concentrations of copper, zinc, cadmium and manganese were within their respective maximum permissible daily levels. However, some species, especially Ocimum canum (8), Clausena anisata and Rauwolfia vomitoria had levels of iron higher than the maximum permissible level of 1000 µg/day and may require care to avoid iron toxicity. The results also highlighted the differences in contents of minerals in Lippia multiflora obtained from different locations in Ghana. The findings generally suggest that the use of these plant species for the management of diseases will not cause heavy metal toxicity and may be beneficial to the users in cases of micronutrient deficiency, as these metals were found to be present in readily bioavailable form.
  28 5,091 246
Protective effect of stem bark of Ceiba pentandra linn. against paracetamol-induced hepatotoxicity in rats
Nirmal K Bairwa, Neeraj K Sethiya, SH Mishra
January-February 2010, 2(1):26-30
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60584  PMID:21808535
The present study reports protective activity of ethyl acetate fraction of methanol extract of stem bark of Ceiba pentandra against paracetamol-induced liver damage in rats. The ethyl acetate fraction (400 mg/kg) was administered orally to the rats with hepatotoxicity induced by paracetamol (3 gm/kg). Silymarin (100 mg/kg) was used as positive control. High performance thin layer chromatography (HPTLC) fingerprinting of ethyl acetate fraction revealed presence of its major chemical constituents. A significant (P < 0.05) reduction in serum enzymes GOT (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), GPT alkaline phosphatase (ALP), total bilirubin content and histopathological screening in the rats treated gave indication that ethyl acetate fraction of methanolic extract of Ceiba pentandra possesses hepatoprotective potential against paracetamol-induced hepatotoxicity in rats.
  21 13,042 259
In vitro sun protection factor determination of herbal oils used in cosmetics
Chanchal Deep Kaur, Swarnlata Saraf
January-February 2010, 2(1):22-25
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60586  PMID:21808534
The aim of this study was to evaluate ultraviolet (UV) absorption ability of volatile and nonvolatile herbal oils used in sunscreens or cosmetics and express the same in terms of sun protection factor (SPF) values. Sun protection factor is a laboratory measure of the effectiveness of sunscreen; the higher the SPF, the more protection a sunscreen offers against the ultraviolet radiations causing sunburn. The in vitro SPF is determined according to the spectrophotometric method of Mansur et al. Hydroalcoholic dilutions of oils were prepared, and in vitro photoprotective activity was studied by UV spectrophotometric method in the range of 290-320 nm. It can be observed that the SPF values found for nonvolatile oils were in between 2 and 8; and for volatile oils, in between 1 and 7. Among the fixed oils taken, SPF value of olive oil was found to be the highest. Similarly among essential oils, SPF value of peppermint oil was found to be the highest. The study will be helpful in the selection of oils and fragrances to develop sunscreens with better safety and high SPF. Oily vehicles are more effective for producing a uniform and long-lasting film of sunscreen on the skin, and their emollient properties protect the skin against the drying effects of exposure to wind and sun. Volatile oils are used as perfumes in cosmetics.
  15 18,643 386
Broad-spectrum sun-protective action of Porphyra-334 derived from Porphyra vietnamensis
Saurabh Bhatia, K Sharma, Ajay G Namdeo, BB Chaugule, M Kavale, S Nanda
January-February 2010, 2(1):45-49
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60578  PMID:21808539
There are enormous UV-protective compounds present in the current world market, out of which 98% give protection against UV-B range and the remaining 2% are potent against far UV-A range only. Furthermore, these synthetic compounds have various problems related to photo-stability and cross-stability. There is a vital need of sunscreen agents that will remain stable for prolonged periods and provide broad-spectrum protection against harmful UV range. The Indian Ocean contains large amounts of macro-algae which synthesize varied amount of mycosporine amino acids, "sun-protective compounds" by shikmic acid pathway. In the present study, we have evaluated the sunscreen protection provided by Porphyra-334, a mycosporine amino acid isolated from Indian sp. of Porphyra. Furthermore, the isolated compound was detected by high performance thin layer chromatography (HPTLC) fingerprinting, high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) and ultraviolet (UV), whereas nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and infrared spectrometry were used for its structural characterization. Stability studies were performed under different storage and pH conditions. Ultimately a sunscreen formulation was developed and its potential against marketed Aloe vera gel was evaluated by in vitro sunscreen protection method. It was observed that sunscreen potential of Porphyra-334 was 5.11-fold greater than that of the marketed Aloe vera gel preparation.
  11 3,624 187
Anticonvulsant and anxiolytic evaluation of leaf extracts of Ocimum gratissimum, a culinary herb
CO Okoli, AC Ezike, OC Agwagah, PA Akah
January-February 2010, 2(1):36-40
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60580  PMID:21808537
Anticonvulsant and anxiolytic activities of leaf extracts and fraction of Ocimum gratissimum L. (Lamiaceae) were studied using seizures induced by pentylenetetrazol and open-field tests in mice. The results showed that the extracts and fraction increased the latency of tonic and tonic-clonic seizures and death and elicited 50% protection against mortality. In the open-field test, the extracts and fraction decreased the frequency of line crossing, center square entries, rearing against a wall and grooming, whereas grooming duration and freezing frequency and duration were increased. Acute toxicity test in mice gave an oral LD 50 greater than 5000 mg/kg for the methanol extract. These findings suggest that extracts of this plant possess anticonvulsant and anxiolytic-like properties.
  10 3,898 241
Bioactivity of Syzygium jambos methanolic extracts: Antibacterial activity and toxicity
S Mohanty, IE Cock
January-February 2010, 2(1):4-9
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60577  PMID:21808530
Methanol extracts from S. jambos leaves were tested for antimicrobial activity and toxicity. S. jambos leaf extract inhibited the growth of 4 of the 14 bacteria tested (29%). Both gram-positive and gram-negative bacterial growths were inhibited by S. jambos leaf extract, although gram-positive bacteria appeared more susceptible. Two of the 10 gram-negative bacteria (20%) and 2 of the 4 gram-positive bacteria (50%) tested had their growths inhibited by the extract. The leaf extract also proved to be toxic in the Artemia franciscana bioassay, with a 48-h LC 50 of 387.9 ± 38.8 µg/mL, making it slightly more toxic than Mevinphos (505.3± 37.7 µg/mL) and approximately 5-fold less toxic than potassium dichromate (80.4 ± 4.3 µg/mL). Whilst potassium dichromate's LC 50 remained constant across the 72-hour test period (24-h LC 50 , 86.3 ± 5.1; 72-h LC 50 , 77.9 ± 4.9), the extract and Mevinphos LC 50 values decreased by 72 hours (87.0 ± 11.3 µg/mL and 103.9 ± 12.8 µg/mL, respectively), indicating their similar levels of toxicity in the assay.
  8 5,580 332
The chemical composition and antimicrobial activity of the leaf oil of Cupressus lusitanica from Monteverde, Costa Rica
Sara L Hassanzadeh, Jessika A Tuten, Bernhard Vogler, William N Setzer
January-February 2010, 2(1):19-21
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60585  PMID:21808533
The essential oils from the leaves of three different individuals of Cupressus lusitanica were obtained by hydrodistillation and analyzed by gas chromatography - mass spectrometry. A total of 49 compounds were identified in the leaf oils. The major components of C. lusitanica leaf oil were α-pinene (40%-82%), limonene (4%-18%), isobornyl acetate (up to 10%) and cis-muurola-4(14),5-diene (up to 7%). The essential oil was screened for antimicrobial activity, and it showed antibacterial activity against Bacillus cereus and antifungal activity against Aspergillus niger.
  7 2,553 129
Diuretic and natriuretic activity of two mistletoe species in rats
Namita Jadhav, CR Patil, KB Chaudhari, JP Wagh, SJ Surana, RB Jadhav
January-February 2010, 2(1):50-57
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60576  PMID:21808540
In different cultural groups, the hemiparasitic plants of the families Loranthaceae and Viscaceae (mistletoes) are frequently used in the treatment of hypertension and/or as diuretic agents. However, it remains unclear as to what commonality makes them diuretic agents or a remedy for hypertension. In this article, the diuretic activity of methanol extracts of Viscum articulatum (VA) Burm. f. and Helicanthus elastica (HE) (Ders.) Dans. in rats is reported. The extracts were administered orally at doses of 100, 200 and 400 mg/kg to rats that had been fasted and deprived of water for 18 hours. Investigations were carried out for diuretic, saluretic and natriuretic effects. The polyphenolic and triterpenoid contents were determined quantitatively using chemical assays and high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) analysis, respectively. The extracts of VA and HE demonstrated significant and dose-dependent diuretic activity in rats. It was found that while VA mimics the furosemide pattern, HE demonstrated a dose-dependent increase in diuresis, along with an increase in potassium-sparing effects. Phytochemical analysis revealed that polyphenolics and triterpenoids, such as oleanolic acid and lupeol, are the major phytochemicals involved. It was also found that in different combinations, these phytochemicals differed in the way they influenced the electrolyte excretion. A higher content of polyphenolics in association with lower triterpenoid content was found to favor potassium-sparing effects.
  7 4,028 227
Solanum trilobatum in the management of atopy: Through inhibition of mast cell degranulation and moderation of release of interleukins
MS Ranjith, A. J. A. Ranjitsingh, S Gokul Shankar, GS Vijayalaksmi, K Deepa, K Babu, Harcharan Singh Sidhu
January-February 2010, 2(1):10-14
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60581  PMID:21808531
Solanum trilobatum is a widely used plant in the Indian indigenous systems of medicine. It is mainly used in the treatment of respiratory diseases like bronchial asthma. In our present study, we report that the aqueous and alcoholic extracts of S. trilobatum exhibited inhibition of mast cell degranulation. Further, aqueous and alcoholic extracts of S. trilobatum significantly decreased the release of IL1α and increased the release of IL8 from the cultured keratinocytes. Oral administration of the aqueous and alcoholic extracts of S. trilobatum stabilized mast cells in experimental rats.
  4 4,516 353
EDITORIAL
Natural product taking its own place!!!
Ambrose Furey
January-February 2010, 2(1):1-3
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60574  PMID:21808529
  3 2,386 288
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Cardiac glycosides from shoot cultures of Cryptostegia grandiflora
Ahmed M. A Abd El-Mawla
January-February 2010, 2(1):15-18
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60583  PMID:21808532
Cardiac glycosides in shoot cultures of Cryptostegia grandiflora were identified when grown in modified MS medium. The change in shoot segments and cardiac glycosides content was followed between day zero and day 12 at 2-day intervals. The content of cardiac glycosides in leaves and shoot cultures of Cryptostegia grandiflora was monitored by HPLC. Two major compounds were detected and isolated from shoot cultures extract, named oleandrigenin 3-O-β-glucopyranosyl-(14)-β-cymaropyranosyl-(14)-β-digitoxopyranoside (cryptostigmin I) and oleandrigenin 3-O-β-glucopyranosyl-(14)-α-rhamnopyranoside (cryptostigmin II). The structures of the isolated compounds were verified by means of MS and NMR spectral analysis, as well as by comparison with authentic samples. The leaves and shoot cultures were analyzed for their cardiac glycosides content. The shoot cultures inoculated into MS-based culture media supplemented with 0.1 mg L-1 BA, 30 g L-1 sucrose, 0.1 g L-1 myo-inositol and 0.1 g L-1 ascorbic acid were found to contain a quantity of cardiac glycosides that was about four fold the cardiac glycosides content of leaves extract.
  3 2,379 142
Effect of dragon fruit extract on oxidative stress and aortic stiffness in streptozotocin-induced diabetes in rats
Kolla R. L Anand Swarup, Munavvar A Sattar, Nor A Abdullah, Mohammed H Abdulla, Ibrahim M Salman, Hassaan A Rathore, Edward J Johns
January-February 2010, 2(1):31-35
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60582  PMID:21808536
Cardiovascular complications are consistently observed in diabetic patients across all age groups. The objective of the present study was to investigate the effect of aqueous extract of the fruit pulp of Hylocereus undatus (DFE) on aortic stiffness and oxidative stress in streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetes in rats. Twenty-four male, Sprague-Dawley rats were randomized into four groups: I (control), II (diabetic), III (DFE, 250 mg/kg) and IV (DFE 500 mg/kg). Diabetes was induced in groups II, III and IV by intraperitoneal (i.p.) injection of STZ (40 mg/kg). After confirmation of diabetes, group III and IV received DFE for 5 weeks. Pulse wave velocity (PWV) was used as a marker of aortic stiffness and was determined at the end of 5 weeks. DFE significantly decreased ( P < 0.05) the fasting blood glucose levels in diabetic rats, but not to normal levels. Systolic blood pressure, pulse pressure and PWV were significantly increased ( P < 0.05) in diabetic rats at the end of 5 weeks in comparison with control group. DFE treatment significantly decreased ( P < 0.05) these elevations. Oxidative damage was observed in group II after 5 weeks. Plasma malondialdehyde levels significantly decreased ( P < 0.05), while superoxide dismutase and total antioxidant capacity significantly increased ( P < 0.05) with DFE treatment in comparison with group II. These data demonstrate that DFE treatment was effective in controlling oxidative damage and decreasing the aortic stiffness measured by PWV in STZ-induced diabetes in rats.
  3 6,691 206
Antiulcer activity of aqueous extract of fruits of Momordica cymbalaria Hook f. in Wistar rats
P Bharathi Dhasan, M Jegadeesan, S Kavimani
January-February 2010, 2(1):58-61
DOI:10.4103/0974-8490.60575  PMID:21808541
Gastric ulcer is one of the most prevalent gastrointestinal disorders, which affects approximately 5%-10% of people during their life. The ulcer is an open sore that develops on the inside lining of the stomach (a gastric ulcer) or the small intestine (a duodenal ulcer). Both types of ulcers are also referred to as peptic ulcer disease. The present study was carried out to investigate antiulcer activity of aqueous extract of fruits of Momordica cymbalaria Hook f. Initially the aqueous extract of M. cymbalaria was subjected to acute oral toxicity study according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) guidelines, based on which, 500 mg/kg dose of aqueous extract was selected for the study. The animals were pretreated before inducing ulcer. For inducing ulcer in the rats, 80% ethanol was used. Various parameters such as area of gastric lesion, nonprotein sulfhydryls (NP-SH) concentration, gastric wall mucus concentration, total acidity and volume of gastric content; and histopathological parameters like hemorrhage, edema, erosion, ulceration were studied in the control group and pretreated groups with aqueous extract of fruits of Momordica cymbalaria (500 mg/kg) and standard drug lanzoprazole (30 mg/kg). Pretreatment with aqueous extract of M. cymbalaria fruits showed significant ( P < 0.05) decrease in the total acidity and ulcer index. Improvements in all histopathological parameters were noticed in the M. cymbalaria-treated group. It also showed significant decrease in gastric lesion and NP-SH and gastric wall mucus concentrations in the M. cymbalaria-treated group. Overall the aqueous extract of M. cymbalaria fruits was shown to possess significant ( P < 0.05) antiulcer property in rats. The polyphenols like quercetin reported from the plant may attribute to the antiulcer property of the extract.
  2 4,315 267
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