Hypotriglyceridemic and hypocholesterolemic effects of anti-diabetic Momordica charantia (karela) fruit extract in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats

      Abstract

      Momordica charantia (karela) is commonly used as an antidiabetic and antihyperglycemic agent in Asian, Oriental and Latin American countries. This study was undertaken to investigate the effects of long term feeding (10 weeks) of M. charantia fruit extract on blood plasma and tissue lipid profiles in normal and streptozotocin (STZ) -induced Type 1 diabetic rats. The results show that there was a significant (P<0.05) increase in plasma non-esterified cholesterol, triglycerides and phospholipids in STZ-induced diabetic rats, accompanied by a decrease in high density lipoprotein (HDL) -cholesterol. A moderate increase in plasma (LPO) product, malonedialdehyde (MDA), and about two-fold increase in kidney LPO was also observed in STZ-induced diabetic rats. The treatment of diabetic rats with M. charantia fruit extract over a 10-week period returned these levels close to normal. In addition, karela juice also exhibited an inhibitory effect on membrane LPO under in vitro conditions. These results suggest that M. charantia fruit extract exhibits hypolipidemic as well as hypoglycemic effects in the STZ-induced diabetic rat.

      Keywords

      Abbreviations:

      HDL, high density lipoprotein (), LDL, low density lipoprotein (), LPO, lipid peroxidation (), MDA, malonedialdehyde (), STZ, streptozotocin (), TBARS, thiobarbituric acid reactive substances ()
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