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Ocimum basilicum extract exhibits antidiabetic effects via inhibition of hepatic glucose mobilization and carbohydrate metabolizing enzymes

Chinelo Ezeani, Ifeoma Ezenyi, Theophine Okoye, Charles Okoli.

Aim: Ocimum basilicum L (Lamiaceae) is used as traditional remedy for different ailments, including diabetes mellitus. This study investigated the antidiabetic effects of an extract of aerial parts of O. basilicum. Methods: Antihyperglycemic effect of the extract was determined by its effects on alpha amylase and alpha glucosidase in vitro, while antidiabetic properties were studied in alloxan-induced diabetic rats treated for 28 days with extract and compared to those treated with oral metformin (150 mg/kg). The study and analysis was conducted between 2014 and 2015. Results: Treatment with 100 and 200 mg/kg extract significantly (P < 0.05) reduced fasting blood glucose concentration and slightly reduced mean body weight in treated groups. Oral glucose tolerance was also significantly (P < 0.05, 0.001) improved in 100 and 400 mg/kg extract-treated groups. The extract caused a dose-dependent increase in liver glycogen content, while it decreased alanine transferase (18.9 30.56%) and aspartate transferase (6.48 34.3 %) levels in a non-dose dependent manner. A dose of 100 mg/kg also reduced serum cholesterol and triglycerides by 19.3 and 39.54 %, compared to a 2.6 % reduction of cholesterol seen in the metformin-treated group. The extract was observed to produce significant (P < 0.001) concentration-dependent inhibition of alpha glucosidase (35.71 100%) and also alpha amylase (23.55 81.52%), with estimated IC50 values of 1.62 and 3.86 mg/mL respectively. Conclusions: The antidiabetic properties of the extract may be due to its ability to suppress endogenous glucose release, inhibit glycogenolysis and/or stimulate glycogenesis

Key words: antidiabetic, diabetes mellitus, hyperglycemia, Ocimum basilicum

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