Aqueous extracts of Teucrium polium possess remarkable antioxidant activity in vitro

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Abstract

Teucrium polium L. (Lamiaceae) (RDC 1117) is a medicinal plant whose species have been used for over 2000 years in traditional medicine due to its diuretic, diaphoretic, tonic, antipyretic, antispasmodic and cholagogic properties. The therapeutic benefit of medicinal plants is often attributed to their antioxidant properties. We previously reported that an aqueous extract of the leaves and stems of this plant could inhibit iron-induced lipid peroxidation in rat liver homogenate at concentrations that were not toxic to cultured hepatic cells. Others have reported that organic extracts of the aerial components of this plant could inhibit oxidative processes. Against this background, we felt further investigation on the antioxidant action of the extract of T. polium prepared according to traditional Arab medicine was warranted. Accordingly, we assessed (i) its ability to inhibit (a) oxidation of β-carotene, (b) 2,2′-azobis(2-amidinopropan) dihydrochloride (AAPH)-induced plasma oxidation and (c) iron-induced lipid peroxidation in rat liver homogenates; (ii) to scavenge the superoxide (O2•-) radical and the hydroxyl radical (OH•); (iii) its effects on the enzyme xanthine oxidase activity; (iv) its capacity to bind iron; and (v) its effect on cell glutathione (GSH) homeostasis in cultured Hep G2 cells. We found that the extract (i) inhibited (a) oxidation of β-carotene, (b) AAPH-induced plasma oxidation (c) Fe2+-induced lipid peroxidation in rat liver homogenates (IC50 = 7 ± 2 μg ml-1); (ii) scavenged O2•-(IC 50 = 12 ± 3 μg ml-1) and OH• (IC50 = 66 ± 20 μg ml-1); (iii) binds iron (IC50 = 79 ± 17 μg ml-1); and (iv) tended to increase intracellular GSH levels resulting in a decrease in the GSSG/GSH ratio. These results demonstrate that the extract prepared from the T. polium possesses antioxidant activity in vitro. Further investigations are needed to verify whether this antioxidant effect occurs in vivo. © 2006 The Author(s).

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Ljubuncic, P., Dakwar, S., Portnaya, I., Cogan, U., Azaizeh, H., & Bomzon, A. (2006). Aqueous extracts of Teucrium polium possess remarkable antioxidant activity in vitro. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 3(3), 329–338. https://doi.org/10.1093/ecam/nel028

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