Endothelial cell death due to increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) may contribute to the initial endothelial injury, which promotes atherosclerotic lesion formation. Piper sarmentosum (PS), a natural product, has been shown to have an antioxidant property, which is hypothesized to inhibit production of ROS and prevent cell injury. Thus, the present study was designed to determine the effects of PS on the hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2))-induced oxidative cell damage in cultured human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs). In this experiment, HUVECs were obtained by collagenase perfusion of the large vein in the umbilical cord and cultured in medium M200 supplemented with low serum growth supplementation (LSGS). HUVECs were treated with various concentrations of H(2)O(2) (0-1000 micromol/L) and it was observed that 180 micromol/L H(2)O(2) reduced cell viability by 50% as denoted by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. Using the above concentration as the positive control, the H(2)O(2)-induced HUVECs were concomitantly treated with various concentrations (100, 150, 250 and 300 microg/ml) of three different extracts (aqueous, methanol and hexane) of PS. Malondialdehyde (MDA), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GPX) levels showed a significant increase (P<0.05) in HUVECs compared to the negative control. However, PS extracts showed a protective effect on HUVECs from H(2)O(2)-induced cell apoptosis with a significant reduction in MDA, SOD, CAT and GPX levels (P<0.05). Furthermore, PS had exhibited ferric reducing antioxidant power with its high phenolic content. Hence, it was concluded that PS plays a beneficial role in reducing oxidative stress in H(2)O(2)-induced HUVECs.
Eurycoma longifolia, locally known as 'Tongkat Ali' is a popular local medicinal plant that possess a lot of medicinal properties as claimed traditionally, especially in the treatment of malaria. The claims have been proven scientifically on isolated compounds from the plant. The present study is to investigate the anti malaria properties of Eurycoma longifolia standardized extract (root) (TA164) alone and in combination with artemisinin in vivo. Combination treatment of the standardized extract (TA164) with artemisinin suppressed P. yoelii infection in the experimental mice. The 4 day suppressive test showed that TA164 suppressed the parasitemia of P. yoelii-infected mice as dose dependent manner (10, 30 and 60 mg/kg BW) by oral and subcutaneous treatment. By oral administration, combination of TA164 at 10, 30 and 60 mg/kg BW each with artemisinin respectively showed a significant increase in the parasitemia suppression to 63, 67 and 80 percent as compared to artemisinin single treatment (31%). Using subcutaneous administration, at 10 mg/kg BW of TA164 in combination with 1.7 mg/kg BW of artemisinin gave a suppression of 80% of infection. This study showed that combination treatment of TA164 with artemisinin gives a promising potential anti malaria candidate using both oral and subcutaneous route, the later being the most potent.
The present study aimed to determine the hepatoprotective activity of a methanol extract of Melastoma malabathricum leaves (MEMM) using two established rat models. Ten groups of rats (n=6) were given a once-daily administration of 10% dimethyl sulfoxide (negative control), 200 mg/kg silymarin (positive control), or MEMM (50, 250, or 500 mg/kg) for 7 days followed by induction of hepatotoxicity either using paracetamol or carbon tetrachloride. Blood samples and livers were collected for biochemical and microscopic analysis. Based on the results obtained, MEMM exhibited a significant (p<0.05) hepatoprotective activity against both inducers, as indicated by an improvement in the liver function test. These observations were supported by the histologic findings. In conclusion, M. malabathricum leaves possessed hepatoprotective activity, which could be linked to their phytochemical constituents and antioxidant activity; this therefore requires further in-depth studies.
Oxidative stress due to abnormal induction of reactive oxygen species (ROS) molecules is believed to be involved in the etiology of many diseases. Evidences suggest that ROS is involved in nephrotoxicity through frequent exposure to industrial toxic agents such as thioacetamide (TAA). The current investigation was designed to explore the possible protective effects of the leaves of Vitex negundo(VN) extract against TAA-induced nephrotoxicity in rats.
The present study aims to evaluate the safety of methanol extract of Cinnamomum burmannii (MECB) by acute 14-day (single dose) and sub-chronic 28-day (repeated doses) oral administration to Sprague-Dawley rats. Our results showed that no toxicity was found in either acute or sub-chronic toxicity studies. MECB (containing 0.07% and 0.20% (w/w) of coumarin and trans-cinnamaldehyde, respectively), which was given orally at doses of 500, 1000 and 2000 mg/kg caused neither visible signs of toxicity nor mortality. No significant differences were observed in general condition, growth, organ weight, hematological parameters, biochemical values, or the gross and microscopic appearance of the organs from the treatment groups as compared to the control group. In conclusion, MECB did not cause any mortality nor did it cause any abnormalities in the necropsy and histopathology findings of treated rats. The LD50 for the MECB was found to be more than 2000 mg/kg. No adverse effects were observed in the treated rats at all the doses tested. The no-observed-adverse-effect level (NOAEL) for the 28-day study was determined to be 2000 mg/kg body weight/day.
The present investigation was carried out to evaluate the safety of standardised 50% ethanol extract of Orthosiphon stamineus plant by determining its potential toxicity after acute and subchronic administration in rats.
Ethanolic extract of Curcuma xanthorrhiza was used to evaluate the analgesic and toxicity effects in vivo. The extract was standardized using GC-MS, which showed that 1 mg of Curcuma xanthorrhiza ethanolic extract contains 0.1238 mg of xanthorrhizol. The analgesic activity was studied in rats using three different models, namely the hot plate test, tail flick test and formalin-induced pain test. The acute oral toxicity was examined by the oral administration of standardized Curcuma xanthorrhiza ethanolic extract in mice at doses ranging from 300-5,000 mg/kg and observation for 14 days. Standardized Curcuma xanthorrhiza ethanolic extract did not show significant analgesic effect in the hot plate and tail flick tests. However, in the formalin-induced pain test, Curcuma xanthorrhiza ethanolic extract significantly (P < 0.05) suppressed the paw licking time of rats in both early and late phases at doses 200 and 400 mg/kg of the extract, respectively. In the acute oral toxicity study, Curcuma xanthorrhiza ethanolic extract did not show any toxic effects in mice at 5 g/kg. These experimental results suggest that the standardized Curcuma xanthorrhiza ethanolic extract showed peripheral and central antinociceptive activity associated with neurogenic pain as well as a relative absence of toxic effects which could compromise the medicinal use of this plant in folk medicine.
Uncaria rhynchophylla is one of the major components included in Traditional Chinese Medicine prescriptions for hypertensive treatment. Previous studies have suggested that U. rhynchophylla might contain vasodilation-mediating active compounds, especially indole alkaloids. Hence, this study was carried out to determine the vasodilatory effects of U. rhynchophylla, which was extracted by different solvents. The most effective extract was then further studied for its signaling mechanism pathways. The authenticity of U. rhynchophylla was assured by using modernized tri-step Fourier transform infrared (FTIR), including conventional 1D FTIR, second derivative scanning combined with 2D-correlated IR spectroscopy. Results obtained proved that the fingerprint of U. rhynchophylla used was identical to the atlas. Isolated aortic rings from male Sprague-Dawley rats were preconstricted with phenylephrine (PE) followed by cumulative addition of U. rhynchophylla extracts. The signaling mechanism pathways were studied by incubation with different receptor antagonists before the PE precontraction. In conclusion, the 95% ethanolic U. rhynchophylla extract (GT100) was found to be most effective with an EC50 value of 0.028 ± 0.002 mg/mL and an Rmax value of 101.30% ± 2.82%. The signaling mechanism pathways employed for exerting its vasodilatory effects included nitric oxide/soluble guanylyl cylcase/cyclic guanosine monophosphate (NO/sGC/cGMP) and PGI2 (endothelium-derived relaxing factors), G protein-coupled M3- and β2 receptors, regulation of membrane potential through voltage-operated calcium channel, intracellular Ca2+ released from inositol triphosphate receptor (IP3R), and all potassium channels except the Kca channel.
The seeds of Swietenia macrophylla King (SM) (Meliaceae) are used as a folk medicine for the treatment of hypertension in Malaysia. However, the antihypertensive and vasorelaxant effects of SM seeds are still not widely studied. Thus, this study was designed to investigate the in vivo antihypertensive effects and in vitro mechanism of vasorelaxation of a 50% ethanolic SM seed extract (SM50) and the fingerprint of SM50 was developed through tri-step Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy. The vasorelaxant activity and the underlying mechanisms of SM50 were evaluated on thoracic aortic rings isolated from Sprague-Dawley rats in the presence of antagonists. The pharmacological effect of SM50 was investigated by oral administration of spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRs) with three different doses of SM50 (1000, 500, and 250 mg/kg/day) for 4 weeks and their systolic blood pressure (SBP) and diastolic blood pressure (DBP) values were measured weekly using tail-cuff method. The tri-step FTIR macro-fingerprint of SM50 showed that SM50 contains stachyose, flavonoids, limonoids, and ester, which may contribute to its vasorelaxant effect. The results showed that the vasorelaxant activity of SM50 was mostly attributed to channel-linked receptors pathways through the blockage of voltage-operated calcium channels (VOCC). SM50 also acts as both potassium channels opener and inositol triphosphate receptor (IP3R) inhibitor, followed by β2-adrenergic pathway, and ultimately mediated through the nitric oxide/soluble guanylyl cyclase/cyclic 3',5'-guanosine monophosphate (NO/sGC/cGMP) signaling pathways. The treatment of SM50 also significantly decreased the SBP and DBP in SHRs. In conclusion, the antihypertensive mechanism of SM50 was mediated by VOCC, K+ channels, IP3R, G-protein-coupled β2-adrenergic receptor, and followed by NO/sGC/cGMP signaling mechanism pathways in descending order. The data suggested that SM50 has the potential to be used as a herbal medicament to treat hypertension.
Bioassay guided fractionation of the roots of Cyathostemma argenteum using the brine shrimp resulted in the isolation of two uncommon flavanones, 2,5-dihydroxy-7-methoxy flavanone 1 and 2,5-dihydroxy-6,7-dimethoxy flavanone 2 while the stem bark yielded the related compounds 5-hydroxy-7-methoxy flavone 3 and 5-hydroxy-6,7-dimethoxy flavone 4. The alkaloids liriodenine 5 and discretamine 6 as well as benzyl benzoate 7 were isolated from the roots and 6 was also isolated from the stembark. In cytotoxicity tests using four human breast cancer cell lines, 1 and 2 were weakly toxic to MCF-7 cells (IC(50) = 19.6 and 19.0 microM, respectively) but showed little activity against MCF-7 cells resistant to doxorubicin or against two oestrogen receptor-deficient cell lines. Compound 5, but not 6 and 7, was moderately cytotoxic against all four cell lines. These results are discussed in the context of the traditional use of C. argenteum in the treatment of breast cancer.
In continuation of our natural and medicinal research programme on tropical rainforest plants, a bioassay guided fractionation of ethanolic extract of leaves of Canarium patentinervium Miq. (Burseraceae Kunth.) led to the isolation of scopoletin (1), scoparone (2), (+)-catechin (3), vomifoliol (4), lioxin (5), and syringic acid (6). All the compounds exhibited antiacetylcholinesterase activity with syringic acid, a phenolic acid exhibiting good AChE inhibition (IC50 29.53 ± 0.19 μ g/mL). All compounds displayed moderate antileishmanial activity with scopoletin having the highest antileishmanial activity (IC50 163.30 ± 0.32 μ g/mL). Given the aforementioned evidence, it is tempting to speculate that Canarium patentinervium Miq. represents an exciting scaffold from which to develop leads for treatment of neurodegenerative and parasitic diseases.
Following up a popular use of crude leaf preparations from Carica papaya for the treatment of dengue infections, a suspension of powdered Carica papaya leaves in palm oil has been investigated for its effect on thrombocyte counts in mice, administering by gavage 15 mg of powdered leaves per kg body weight to 5 mice. Equal numbers of animals received corresponding volumes of either palm oil alone or physiological saline solution. Thrombocyte counts before and at 1, 2, 4, 8, 10, 12, 24, 48 and 72 hours after dosing revealed significantly higher mean counts at 1, 2, 4, 8, 10 and 12 after dosing with the C. papaya leaf formulation as compared to the mean count at hour 0. There was only a non-significant rise of thrombocyte counts in the group having received saline solution, possibly the expression of a normal circadian rhythm in mice. The group having received palm oil only showed a protracted increase of platelet counts that was significant at hours 8 and 48 and obviously the result of a hitherto unknown stimulation of thrombocyte release. The results call for a dose-response investigation and for extending the studies to the isolation and identification of the C. papaya substances responsible for the release and/or production of thrombocytes.
The habitats of Eurycoma longifolia Jack, a slender tree, are jungles in Malaysia and Indonesia. It belongs to the family Simaroubaceae and is a source of quassinoids with anabolic, antimalarial and cytostatic activity. In this study, conducted during 2008 in Mae Sot, Thailand, a standardized extract of E. longifolia containing three major quassinoids, eurycomanone (1), 13,21-dihydroeurycomanone (2) and 13alpha(21)-epoxyeurycomanone (3) was evaluated for antiplasmodial activity against Plasmodium falciparum and its activity has been compared with that of artemisinin, using 38 fresh parasite isolates and assessment of inhibition of schizont maturation. The IC(50), IC(90) and IC(99) values for artemisinin were 4.30, 45.48 and 310.97 microg/l, and those for the root extract from E. longifolia 14.72, 139.65 and 874.15 microg/l respectively. The GMCOC for artemisinin was 337.81 mug/l, and for the plant extract it was 807.41 microg/l. The log-concentration probit regressions were parallel. The inhibitory activity of the E. longifolia extract was higher than that expected from the three quassinoids isolated from the plant, suggesting synergism between the quassinoids or the presence of other unidentified compounds.
For the diagnosis of IgE-mediated (immediate) hypersensitivity to natural rubber latex (NRL), skin prick testing with extracts of latex gloves has been widely used, but such extracts are difficult to standardize. The present study aimed to produce on an industrial scale an NRL extract from freshly collected NRL and to evaluate, calibrate, and standardize the extract by both in vivo and in vitro testing. The source material, latex of the rubber tree, Hevea brasiliensis (clone RRIM 600), was frozen immediately after collection in Malaysia and shipped in dry ice to Stallergènes SA, France. Protein and allergen profiles were analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), immunoblotting, isoelectric focusing (IEF), crossed immunoelectrophoresis (CIE), and crossed radioimmunoelectrophoresis (CRIE). Allergen quantification was effected by RAST inhibition. The capacity of the preparation to elicit immediate hypersensitivity reactions in vivo was measured by skin prick testing in 46 latex-allergic patients and 76 nonallergic control subjects. SDS-PAGE and immunoblot profiles of the extract and an NRL standard (E8) provided by the US Food and Drug Administration were almost identical, disclosing several distinct IgE-binding proteins with apparent molecular weights of 14, 20, 27, 30, and 45 kDa, conforming to reported molecular weights of several significant NRL allergens. An arbitrary index of reactivity (IR) of 100 was assigned to the extract at 1:200 dilution (w/v), having a protein content of 22 micrograms/ml. Skin prick testing of latex-allergic patients and controls using the extract at 100 IR revealed 93% sensitivity, 100% specificity, 100% negative predictive value, and 96% positive predictive value. In conclusion, a skin prick test reagent for diagnosis of type I NRL allergy was successfully standardized. The reagent was demonstrated to contain most, if not all, of the currently known clinically significant NRL allergens, and it showed high sensitivity and specificity.
The inhibitory activity of a semipure fraction from the plant, Acalypha wilkesiana assigned as 9EA-FC-B, alone and in combination with ampicillin, was studied against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). In addition, effects of the combination treatment on PBP2a expression were investigated. Microdilution assay was used to determine the minimal inhibitory concentrations (MIC). Synergistic effects of 9EA-FC-B with ampicillin were determined using the fractional inhibitory concentration (FIC) index and kinetic growth curve assay. Western blot experiments were carried out to study the PBP2a expression in treated MRSA cultures. The results showed a synergistic effect between ampicillin and 9EA-FC-B treatment with the lowest FIC index of 0.19 (synergism ≤ 0.5). The presence of 9EA-FC-B reduced the MIC of ampicillin from 50 to 1.56 μg mL(-1). When ampicillin and 9EA-FC-B were combined at subinhibitory level, the kinetic growth curves were suppressed. The antibacterial effect of 9EA-FC-B and ampicillin was shown to be synergistic. The synergism is due the ability of 9EA-FC-B to suppress the activity of PBP2a, thus restoring the susceptibility of MRSA to ampicillin. Corilagin was postulated to be the constituent responsible for the synergistic activity showed by 9EA-FC-B.
The antioxidant activities and protective effects of total phenolic extracts (TPE) and their major components from okra seeds on oxidative stress induced by carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) in rat hepatocyte cell line were investigated. The major phenolic compounds were identified as quercetin 3-O-glucosyl (1 → 6) glucoside (QDG) and quercetin 3-O-glucoside (QG). TPE, QG, and QDG from okra seeds exhibited excellent reducing power and free radical scavenging capabilities including α, α-diphenyl-β-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH), superoxide anions, and hydroxyl radical. Overall, DPPH radical scavenging activity and reducing power of QG and QDG were higher than those of TPE while superoxide and hydroxyl radical scavenging activities of QG and TPE were higher than those of QDG. Furthermore, TPE, QG, and QDG pretreatments significantly alleviated the cytotoxicity of CCl4 on rat hepatocytes, with attenuated lipid peroxidation, increased SOD and CAT activities, and decreased GPT and GOT activities. The protective effects of TPE and QG on rat hepatocytes were stronger than those of QDG. However, the cytotoxicity of CCl4 on rat hepatocytes was not affected by TPE, QG, and QDG posttreatments. It was suggested that the protective effects of TPE, QG, and QDG on rat hepatocyte against oxidative stress were related to the direct antioxidant capabilities and the induced antioxidant enzymes activities.
Common Gram-positive clinical pathogens are showing an increasing trend for resistance to conventional antimicrobial agents. New drugs with potent antibacterial activities are urgently needed to remediate this problem. Halogenated compounds isolated from several species of the red algae genus Laurencia were examined for their antibacterial activity against 22 strains of human pathogenic bacteria, 7 strains of which were antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Four phenolic sesquiterpenes and a polybrominated indole showed wide spectra of antibacterial activity against Gram-positive bacteria including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), penicillin-resistant Streptococcus pneumoniae, and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus faecalis and E. faecium (VRE). In addition, laurinterol and allolaurinterol displayed potent bactericidal activity against three strains of MRSA at 3.13 microg mL(-1), and three strains of vancomycin-susceptible Enterococcus, at 3.13 microg mL(-1) and 6.25 microg mL(-1), respectively.