Accessible Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter June 17, 2014

The protective effects of Ziziphus vulgaris L. fruits on biochemical and histological abnormalities induced by diabetes in rats

Najmeh Goli-malekabadi, Sedigheh Asgary, Bahman Rashidi, Mahmood Rafieian-Kopaei, Mostafa Ghannadian, Shabnam Hajian and Amirhossein Sahebkar

Abstract

Background: Diabetes mellitus arises from a deficient production and action of insulin. Ziziphus vulgaris L. (jujube) is a medicinal plant that is known to have anti-diabetic actions. The aim of the present study was to investigate the protective effects of jujube fruit powder and extract against biochemical imbalances in stereptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetes.

Methods: Diabetes was induced in rats using intraperitoneal injection of STZ at a dose of 60 mg/kg body weight (bw). Jujube powder (1 g/kg bw) and extract (1 g/kg bw) were administered daily via gavage, from two weeks prior to three weeks after STZ injection. Serum concentrations of glucose, insulin, and lipids and histological changes of the pancreas tissue were assessed at the end of study.

Results: The kaempferol content of jujube extract was found to be 0.013±0.0005% (w/w). Two weeks of supplementation with jujube powder resulted in a significant reduction of serum glucose levels compared with the non-diabetic control group prior to STZ treatment. Both jujube preparations prevented serum insulin decrease following STZ treatment, increased antioxidant capacity, and reduced total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, and malondialdehyde levels. Jujube powder reduced serum low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and C-reactive protein concentrations while jujube extract had no effect on these parameters. Histopathological examination revealed a significant attenuation of pancreatic inflammation in the jujube-treated animals.

Conclusions: The present findings suggest a protective role of jujube supplementation, in particular in the powdered form, against diabetes-induced biochemical and histopathological abnormalities.

Acknowledgments

This study was financially supported by the Medical Plants Research Center, Shahrekord University of Medical Sciences, Shahrekord, Iran.

Conflict of interest statement

Authors’ conflict of interest disclosure: The authors stated that there are no conflicts of interest regarding the publication of this article. Research funding played no role in the study design; in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; or in the decision to submit the report for publication.

Research funding: None declared.

Employment or leadership: None declared.

Honorarium: None declared.

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Received: 2014-2-21
Accepted: 2014-4-28
Published Online: 2014-6-17
Published in Print: 2014-9-1

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