Open Access Original Research Article

Effect of Different Decontamination Methods on Microbiological Aspects, Bioactive Constituents and Antibacterial Activity of Turmeric (Curcuma longa Linn.) Powder

Sasitorn Chusri, Sanan Subhadhirasakul, Nurhakeem Tahyoh, Chareefah Billateh, Chayanon Chaowuttikul, Julalak Chorachoo, Supayang Piyawan Voravuthikunchai

European Journal of Medicinal Plants, Page 276-289
DOI: 10.9734/EJMP/2012/1298

Turmeric (Curcuma longa Linn.) has long been widely used for food, food additives, and traditional medicine. This study was aimed to assess effects of different decontamination procedures of turmeric rhizomes on microbiological quality and bioactive constituents of aseptically prepared turmeric powder. In addition, antibacterial activity of the powder on skin and wound pathogens was performed. The tested rhizomes were decontaminated by different methods including soaking in 70% (v/v) ethanol for 15 min, boiling in water for 15 min, boiling in 5% (v/v) acetic acid for 15 min, steaming at 100ºC for 15 min and autoclaving at 121ºC and 15 psi for 15 min. There were no foreign materials detected among the tested samples. The moisture content of each analyzed powder was similar (6.1±0.4%; v/w). The microbial contamination of the turmeric samples prepared from the ethanol soaked rhizome, water boiled rhizome, acetic acid boiled rhizome, and autoclaved rhizome were of satisfactory quality as required by the Thai Herbal Pharmacopoeia (THP) standard. Even though, the decontamination processes altered the contents of ethanol- and water-soluble extractives, curcuminoids, and volatile oils of the turmeric products but all of them conform to the THP standard. Among these techniques, the autoclave method was found to be sufficient for complete microbial decontamination without significantly affecting on the active constitutes of the turmeric powder.

Open Access Original Research Article

Haematological and Hepatotoxic Potential of Onion (Allium cepa) and Garlic (Allium sativum) Extracts in Rats

Enitan Seyi Samson, Ajeigbe Kazeem Olasunkanmi, Josiah Sunday Joel, Ehiaghe Friday Alfred

European Journal of Medicinal Plants, Page 290-307
DOI: 10.9734/EJMP/2012/1517

Aims: To evaluate and compare the effects of single and combined oral administration of fresh aqueous onion (Allium cepa) and garlic (Allium sativum) extracts at different concentrations (200mg/kg/d, 400mg/kg/d and 600mg/kg/d) on some haematological and hepatotoxicity indicator parameters in treated rats.
Study Design: Cross-sectional nonclinical study in animal model.
Place and Duration of Study: The study was carried out at the Department of Physiology, Department of Biochemistry and Department of Haematology, College of Health Sciences, Igbinedion University Okada, Edo state, Nigeria between the month of July and August, 2011.
Methodology: Following 30 days post-oral administration of extracts in 36 treated male albino rats as well as 4 controls, haematological parameters were determined using the Sysmex® Automated Haematology Analyzer, while serum levels of liver enzymes were evaluated using the Reflotron® Plus Auto-Analyzer and liver weight was determined using electronic sensitive weighing balance.

Results: Red blood cell count (RBC), Packed cell volume (PCV), Haemoglobin concentration (HGB), Total White blood cell count (TWBC), Absolute Count of Neutrophil (NEUT#), Absolute Count of Lymphocyte (LYM#), Absolute Count of the summation of Monocyte, Eosinophil and Basophil (MXD#) and Platelet count (PLT) were significantly increased (P<0.05) to varied extent, except Mean cell volume (MCV), Mean cell haemoglobin (MCH) and Mean cell haemoglobin concentration (MCHC) while Alanine aminotransferase (ALAT) and Aspartate aminotransferase (ASAT) serum levels were significantly decreased (P<0.001) and liver weight (LW) was non-significantly (P>0.05) reduced in a dose-dependent manner when compared to the control. Synergistic effect was not observed in the haematological parameters when the two extracts were combined.
Conclusion: The results of this study reveal the haematological potential of onion and garlic extracts with no potential risk of hepatotoxicity (at the concentrations tested) as earlier anticipated. It also further confirms the higher efficacy of garlic over that of onion, but the molecular mechanism behind their combined effect would require further investigation.

Open Access Original Research Article

Assessment of the Activity of Selected Indian Medicinal Plants against Mycobacterium tuberculosis: A Preliminary Screening Using the Microplate Alamar Blue Assay

Tannaz Birdi, Desiree D’souza, Monica Tolani, Poonam Daswani, Vinita Nair, Pundarikakshudu Tetali, Juan Carlos Toro, Sven Hoffner

European Journal of Medicinal Plants, Page 308-323
DOI: 10.9734/EJMP/2012/1638

Aim: Identification of anti-Mycobacterium tuberculosis agents of plant origin, against sensitive and multidrug resistant (MDR) strains.
Study Design: Assessing anti-M. tuberculosis activity of five Indian medicinal plants, which have been reported in traditional literature for various uses including respiratory ailments.
Place and Duration of Study: Mumbai, India; May 2009 – December 2011.
Methodology of Study: The reference strain (H37Rv), three susceptible and three MDR clinical isolates of M. tuberculosis were used. Acetone, ethanol and aqueous extracts (prepared sequentially) of Acorus calamus L. (rhizome), Andrographis paniculata Nees. (leaf), Ocimum sanctum L. (leaf), Piper nigrum L. (seed) and Pueraria tuberosa DC. (tuber) were tested at 1, 10 and 100 µg/ml using the Microplate Alamar Blue Assay. The active extracts were assessed for cytotoxicity on the human lung epithelial cell line (A549) using the neutral red assay and a phytochemical analysis was made using High Performance Thin Layer Chromatography (HPTLC).
Results: Among the plants tested, the acetone extract of P. nigrum appears promising. It was effective against H37Rv, all susceptible isolates and one MDR isolate at 100 µg/ml. The ethanol extract caused some inhibition of growth, though less than the cut-off of 99%. A combination of acetone and ethanol extracts at 50 µg/ml each was effective against all isolates tested. The known active phytoconstituent of P. nigrum, piperine (also an efflux pump inhibitor), was effective against H37Rv in the presence of suboptimal concentration of Rifampicin, but not against the clinical isolates tested. Presence of piperine in the acetone and ethanol extracts was confirmed by HPTLC. Extracts of P. nigrum and piperine were not cytotoxic to the A549 cell line.
Conclusion: Amongst the five plants tested, P. nigrum was active. The acetone extract may have active components in addition to piperine. It is possible that the class and expression of efflux pumps in H37Rv is different from that in the clinical isolates, and hence piperine did not inhibit these isolates. Thus, it is necessary to screen clinical isolates in addition to reference strains. The observation of the increased efficacy of the combination of acetone and ethanol extracts is interesting.

Open Access Original Research Article

Comparison of the Microwave-Assisted Hydrodistillation with the Traditional Hydrodistillation Method in the Extraction of Essential Oils from Ferulago angulata (Schelcht.) Boiss

Jila Asghari, Cheshmnaz Khamoie Touli, Mohsen Mazaheritehrani, Mahnaz Aghdasi

European Journal of Medicinal Plants, Page 324-334
DOI: 10.9734/EJMP/2012/1488

Aims: The evaluation of the chemical constituents and the percentages of extracted volatile oils from the aerial parts of Ferulago angulata (Scheleht.) Boiss (Apiaceae) by using MAHD and HD.
Study Design: Extraction of essential oils from F. angulata through traditional hydrodistillation (HD) and microwave- assisted hydrodistillation (MAHD) methods.
Place and Duration of Study: Fresh F. angulata was collected from the Dalaho Mountain- Kermanshah province (west of Iran) in June 2010.
Methodology: The aerial parts of F. angulata was extracted through microwave-assisted hydrodistillation (MAHD) protocol and compared to the conventional hydrodistillation (HD) method.
Results: The optimal extraction conditions for the extraction of cis and trans-β- ocimene by MAHD was as follows: Irradiation power 600 and 650W for Z- and E-β- ocimene respectively at radiation time of 34 min. The essential oil was analyzed by GC and GC/Mass. The 28 and 18 components have been identified in MAHD and HD methods at 34 min and 4h respectively. The final amount of yield in the MAHD was more than the amount extracted by HD (93.54% compare to 75.8). The major components, which were found in aerial parts, were E- and Z-β- Ocimene by both methods.
Conclusion: We found yield/ efficiency, chemical composition, quality of the essential oils and cost the operation MAHD was superior in terms of saving energy and extraction time.

Open Access Original Research Article

Phytochemical Characterization and Radical Scavenging Activity of Aqueous Extracts of Medicinal Plants from Portugal

Ana F. Vinha, Marta O. Soares, Ana Castro, António Santos, Maria Beatriz P.P. Oliveira, Marisa Machado

European Journal of Medicinal Plants, Page 335-347
DOI: 10.9734/EJMP/2012/1946

Aims: The aim of this study was to evaluate the total phenolic and flavonoid contents of four medicinal plants from Portugal usually consumed as tea infusion, Melissa officinalis (Lamiaceae) – lemon balm, Matricaria chamomilla (Asteraceae) – chamomile, Olea europaea (Oleaceae) – olive leaves, and Aloysia triphylla (Verbenaceae) – lemon verbena.
Place and Duration of Study: Air-dried leaves of four of the most consumed medicinal plants from Portugal were analyzed in the Department of Pharmacognosy (UFP) and Laboratory of Bromatology (FFUP) and, Department of Pharmacy, and Chemical Laboratory, Health Technology Research Center (CITS) between June 2010 and September 2011.
Methodology: Qualitative phytochemical analysis was done for several phytoconstituents (alkaloids, steroids, terpenoids, flavonoids, and tannins). Total phenolic, flavonoid, and tannin contents were quantified by UV-Vis spectrophotometry. It was also analyzed the possible correlation between antioxidant activity (in vitro) and the synergistic effect between different phytochemicals, using the free radical 2,2’-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH•).
Results: Steroids, terpenoids, flavonoids and tannin, were present in Melissa officinalis and Matricaria chamomilla. In Olea europaea leaves, all the chemical constituents were present except alkaloids, and terpenoids. Aloysia triphylla showed the presence of all the constituents. Total phenol contents ranged from 12.91mg.100g-1 to 87.25 mg.100g-1 and flavonoid contents ranged from 25.17mg.100g-1 to 57.28mg.100g-1. The screening of the leaf of the four selected medicinal plants indicates that the presence of high phenolic content may be due to the presence of tannins and flavonoids which are known to possess antioxidant activities. A slight correlation has been observed between total phenolics and antioxidant activity.
Conclusion: Our findings provided evidence that aqueous extracts of these tested plants from Portugal contain medicinally important bioactive compounds. Results showed that plants from Portugal usually used as tea infusions are a good source of phytochemical compounds presenting antioxidant activity, so their consumption must be incremented in younger generations which usually consume other less beneficial drinks.

Open Access Original Research Article

Hyponatremic Effect of Aqueous Leaf Extract of Acalypha wilkesiana in Male Wistar Rats

O. M. Iniaghe, E. B. Oyewo, O. Egharevba

European Journal of Medicinal Plants, Page 348-355
DOI: 10.9734/EJMP/2012/1057

Aims: To evaluate the hyponatremic effect of aqueous leaf extract of Acalypha wilkesiana in male wistar rats.
Study Design: In vivo study.
Place and Duration of Study: Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma Nigeria, between August 2011 and October 2011.
Methodology: Thirty two male wistar rats of average body weights (167.50 ± 5.56 g) were grouped into four (A-D), of eight rats each. Group A received distilled water (control), while constituted doses of 2500, 5000 and 10000 mg/kg body weight of the extract were administered once daily for 14 days to animals in group B, C and D respectively. The effect of administration of this extract on serum sodium ions and weight parameters was evaluated. Serum activities of alkaline phosphatase, aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase; serum proteins, bilirubin, creatinine, urea, uric acid, potassium, calcium and phosphate ion concentrations were determined.
Results: Significant reductions (p<0.05) were observed in serum sodium ion at doses above 2500 mg/kg body weight and this reduction was significantly dose-dependent up to 10000 mg/kg body weight of the extract. No significant differences (p>0.05) were obtained in all other serum and weight parameters determined.
Conclusion: This extract at the administered doses is safe, and its hyponatremic action suggests that it could be used as a diuretic.

Open Access Original Research Article

Anti-inflammatory and Analgesic Effects of the Methanol Stem Bark Extract of Brachystegia eurycoma Harms (Fabaceae)

I. Igbe, B. A. Ayinde, A. Izuchukwu

European Journal of Medicinal Plants, Page 356-365
DOI: 10.9734/EJMP/2012/1599

Aims: The aim of the study was to investigate the analgesic and anti-inflammatory activities of the methanol stem bark extract of Brachystegia eurycoma Harms.
Place and Duration of Study: Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Benin.
Methodology: Analgesic activity was examined using the hot plate and acetic acid-induced writhing test while acute anti-inflammatory effect was studied using carrageenan and dextran-induced paw edema.
Results: Oral administration of the extract produced significant (P<0.01) antiedematogenic effect with a dose of 100 mg/kg within the 2nd and 4th h of the experiment in the dextran-induced paw edema and within the 1st and 3rd h in the carrageenan model. The extract exhibited a significant (P<0.001) inhibition of acetic acid-induced writhing. In the hot plate test, the extract (100 mg/kg) significantly (P<0.05) prolonged the reaction latency to pain at the 60 min. Oral acute toxicity studies did not show any mortality at 5 g/kg of the plant extract.
Conclusion: This study showed that Brachystegia eurycoma possesses significant anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties.