Introduction: Currently, there is considerable interest in the development of lipid-lowering agents from natural products. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the hypolipidemic activity of hydroalcoholic extract of leaves of Alocasia macrorrhizos (AM), which is known to have anti-oxidant activity. Materials and Methods: Cholesterol-rich high-fat-diet was used to induce hyperlipidemia. Rats were randomly assigned to five groups of six rats each. Groups 1 and 2 served as normal and high-fat-diet-fed control, respectively. Group 3 received the standard drug, atorvastatin, while groups 4 and 5 received AM 250 and 500 mg/kg, respectively. High-fat-diet was fed for 45 days and treatment/vehicle was administered during the latter 30 days, following which blood samples of anaesthetized rats obtained by cardiac puncture were sent for lipid profile. Results: High-fat-diet significantly increased (P < 0.05) all the parameters of lipid profile compared to group 1. Atorvastatin treatment significantly reduced total cholesterol (TC), LDL-C, VLDL-C (P < 0.001), and triglyceride (P < 0.05), however, there was no significant change in HDL-C compared to group 2. AM at both the doses significantly reduced triglyceride and VLDL-C levels compared not only to group 2, but also to group 3 (P < 0.05). There was no change in TC and HDL-C levels, however, there was a significant dose related rise in the LDL-C level in the AM-treated groups compared to group 2 (P < 0.05 at 250 mg/kg, P < 0.001 at 500 mg/kg). Conclusion: The hydroalcoholic extract of leaves of Alocasia macrorrhizos at the dose of 250 and 500 mg/kg in rats significantly reduced triglyceride and VLDL-C levels; however, it increased LDL-C. Hence, it may not be suitable as a lipid-lowering agent.
Key words: Alocasia macrorrhizos, high-fat-diet, hypolipidemic, LDL-C, triglycerides