METHODS: Geraniin (95% purity) was extracted and purified from rambutan rind. Two groups of male Sprague-Dawley rats were fed with 60% high-fat diet and standard rat chow, respectively, for 12 weeks. High-fat diet-treated rats were then administered geraniin at different doses. Body weight, blood pressure and blood glucose readings were measured. At the end of treatment, blood was collected for analysis of glycated haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), insulin, advanced glycation end-product (AGE) levels, renin, aldosterone and electrolytes.
RESULTS: Within the first week of treatment, even the lowest dose of geraniin caused a significant reduction in blood pressure, which was comparable to control diet-treated rats. There were no changes in serum electrolytes, renin or aldosterone. Similarly, there was a significant reduction in serum insulin, insulin resistance and AGE levels at the lowest dose. However, there was no significant decrease in fasting blood glucose or HbA1c. The effects of decreasing insulin, insulin resistance and AGEs were observed only at the lower doses, unlike the results observed for blood pressure reduction.
CONCLUSION: Geraniin at lower doses improved blood pressure and other metabolic parameters. Secondary metabolites of geraniin, associated with antihypertensive activity, are relatively different to those involved in inhibiting AGE formation and increasing insulin sensitivity. The secondary metabolites of geraniin may be individually responsible for the bioactivities demonstrated.
Patients and methods: A focus group discussion was conducted with 12 community pharmacists. Participants were recruited using snowball sampling. Audio-recordings were transcribed verbatim, and analyzed using a thematic approach.
Results: Three themes were apparent: 1) suggestions for app design and content, 2) perceived benefits of the app, and 3) potential challenges related to the app. Participants believed the app would be able to facilitate and improve communication, and hence relationship, between pharmacists and the DHoH. Potential challenges of the app were highlighted, such as the need for manpower to manage the app, and its cost to this group of economically disadvantaged people. There were also concerns about privacy and security.
Conclusions: This study allowed community pharmacists, one of the end-users of the app, to provide feedback on the contents and design of the app, which would allow them to provide pharmaceutical care services to patients who are DHoH, and better serve them. Potential benefits and challenges of the app were also identified. Undoubtedly, through the mHealth app, community pharmacists will be better equipped to serve and communicate with the DHoH, and this will hopefully translate to improved health outcomes in these patients.
Methods: A community-based participatory research method was utilized. Two focus group discussions (FGDs) were conducted in Malaysian sign language (BIM) with a total of 10 DHH individuals. Respondents were recruited using purposive sampling. Video-recordings were transcribed and analyzed using a thematic approach.
Results: Two themes emerged: (I) challenges and scepticism of the healthcare system; and (II) features of the mHealth app. Respondents expressed fears and concerns about accessing healthcare services, and stressed on the need for sign language interpreters. There were also concerns about data privacy and security. With regard to app features, the majority preferred videos instead of text to convey information about their disease and medication, due to their lower literacy levels.
Conclusions: For an mHealth app to be effective, app designers must ensure the app is individualised according to the cultural and linguistic diversity of the target audience. Pharmacists should also educate patients on the potential benefits of the app in terms of assisting patients with their medicine-taking.
Methods: Antioxidant properties were assessed through various radical (DPPH, ABTS, and nitric oxide) scavenging assays and determination of total phenolic content and ferric reducing antioxidant power level. ARPE-19 cells were preincubated with samples before the addition of GO (to generate H2O2). Cell viability, change in intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS), H2O2 levels in cell culture supernatant, and gene expression were assessed.
Results: F2 showed higher antioxidant levels than the extract when assessed for radical scavenging activities and ferric reducing antioxidant power. F2 protected the ARPE-19 cells against GO-H2O2-induced oxidative stress by reducing the production of H2O2 and intracellular reactive oxygen species. This was achieved by the activation of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2/NFE2L2) and superoxide dismutase (SOD2), as well as downregulation of nitric oxide producer (NOS2) at the transcriptional level.
Conclusions: The results showed that myricetin derivatives from S. malaccense have the capacity to exert considerable exogenous antioxidant activities and stimulate endogenous antioxidant activities. Therefore, these derivatives have excellent potential to be developed as therapeutic agents for managing DR.