Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

Journal of Complementary and Integrative Medicine

Editor-in-Chief: Lui, Edmund

Ed. by Ko, Robert / Leung, Kelvin Sze-Yin / Saunders, Paul / Suntres, PH. D., Zacharias

CiteScore 2017: 1.41

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.472
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2017: 0.564

See all formats and pricing
More options …

Terminalia Sericea aqueous leaf extract protects growing wistar rats against fructose-induced fatty liver disease

Busisani W. Lembede
  • Corresponding author
  • School of Physiology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, 7 York Road, Parktown, Johannesburg 2193, Republic of South Africa
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Kennedy H. Erlwanger
  • School of Physiology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, 7 York Road, Parktown, Johannesburg 2193, Republic of South Africa
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Pilani Nkomozepi
  • Department of Human Anatomy and Physiology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Johannesburg, Doornfontein, Johannesburg, Republic of South Africa
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Eliton Chivandi
  • School of Physiology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, 7 York Road, Parktown, Johannesburg 2193, Republic of South Africa
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2018-06-21 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jcim-2018-0035



Terminalia sericea (T. sericea) is traditionally used to treat stomach ailments, infections, hypertension and diabetes mellitus. Previous in vitro studies have reported that T. sericea has lipolytic properties. This study interrogated the effects of T. sericea on linear growth, development of fatty liver disease, viscera morphometry and health of growing rats fed a 12% fructose solution (FS).


Thirty 21-day old male Wistar rat pups were randomly allocated to five treatments: group I - plain gelatine cubes (PGC) + plain tap water (PW), group II - 12% FS + PGC, group III - gelatine cubes containing fenofibrate (Feno) at a dose of 100 mg/kg body + FS, group IV - gelatine cubes containing the low dose (100 mg/kg body mass per day) of the T. sericea extract (TsL) + FS, group V - gelatine cubes containing the high dose (400 mg/kg body mass per day) of the T. sericea extract (TsH) + FS. Following 12 weeks of feeding, the rats were fasted overnight, euthanized and plasma and viscera harvested for analysis.


Consumption of fructose resulted in significantly increased (p<0.05) liver lipid content and caused macrovesicular steatosis. The T. sericea extracts at 400 mg/kg per day suppressed the fructose-induced liver lipid accumulation and macrovesicular steatosis similarly to 100 mg/kg per day of Feno.


These findings suggest that the aqueous T. sericea leaf extract at 400 mg/kg per day could potentially protect against fructose-induced lipid accumulation as well as macrovesicular steatosis.

Keywords: fructose solution; non-alcoholic fatty liver disease; steatosis; Terminalia sericea; viscera morphometry


  • [1]

    Gaggini M, Morelli M, Buzzigoli E, DeFronzo RA, Bugianesi E, Gastaldelli A. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and its connection with insulin resistance, dyslipidemia, atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease. Nutrients. 2013;5:1544–60.Web of SciencePubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [2]

    Kelishadi R, Poursafa P. Obesity and air pollution: global risk factors for pediatric non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Hepat Mon. 2011;11:794–802.PubMedWeb of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [3]

    Denzer C. Nichtalkoholische fettlebererkrankung bei adipösen kindern und jugendlichen. Bundesgesundheitsblatt - Gesundheitsforsch - Gesundheitsschutz. 2013;56:517–27.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [4]

    Kleiner DE, Brunt EM, Van Natta M, Behling C, Contos MJ, Cummings OW, et al. Design and validation of a histological scoring system for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Hepatology. 2005;41:1313–21.CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [5]

    Tappy L, Lê K-A. Does fructose consumption contribute to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease?. Clin Res Hepatol Gastroenterol. 2012;36:554–60.CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [6]

    Nomura K, Yamanouchi T. The role of fructose-enriched diets in mechanisms of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. J Nutr Biochem. 2012;23:203–8.CrossrefPubMedWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [7]

    Rutledge AC, Adeli K. Fructose and the metabolic syndrome: pathophysiology and molecular mechanisms. Nutr Rev. 2008;65:S13–23.Web of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [8]

    Dekker MJ, Su Q, Baker C, Rutledge AC, Adeli K. Fructose: a highly lipogenic nutrient implicated in insulin resistance, hepatic steatosis, and the metabolic syndrome. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2010;299:E685–94.PubMedWeb of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [9]

    Song M, Schuschke DA, Zhou Z, Chen T, Shi X, Zhang J, et al. Modest fructose beverage intake causes liver injury and fat accumulation in marginal copper deficient rats. Obesity. 2013;21:1669–75.CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [10]

    Kostapanos MS, Kei A, Elisaf MS. Current role of fenofibrate in the prevention and management of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. World J Hepatol. 2013;5:470–8.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [11]

    Fyhrquist P, Mwasumbi L, Hæggström CA, Vuorela H, Hiltunen R, Vuorela P. Ethnobotanical and antimicrobial investigation on some species of Terminalia and Combretum (Combretaceae) growing in Tanzania. J Ethnopharmacol. 2002;79:169–77.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [12]

    World Health Organisation (WHO). WHO traditional medicine strategy 2014–2023. Geneva: World Health Organization (WHO) Press, 2013:1–76.Google Scholar

  • [13]

    Moshi MJ, Mbwambo ZH. Some pharmacological properties of extracts of Terminalia sericea roots. J Ethnopharmacol. 2005;97:43–7.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [14]

    Deutschländer MS, Lall N, Van De Venter M. Plant species used in the treatment of diabetes by South African traditional healers: an inventory. Pharm Biol. 2009;47:348–65.CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [15]

    Mochizuki M, Hasegawa N. Acceleration of lipid degradation by sericoside ofTerminalia sericea roots in Fully differentiated 3T3-L1 cells. Phyther Res. 2006;20:1020–1.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [16]

    Nkobole N, Houghton PJ, Hussein A, Lall N. Antidiabetic activity of Terminalia sericea constituents. Nat Prod Commun. 2011;6:1585–8.PubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [17]

    Bessong PO, Obi CL, Igumbor E, Andreola M-L LS. In vitro activity of three selected South African medicinal plants against human immunodeficiency virus type 1 reverse transcriptase. African J Biotechnol. 2004;3:555–9.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [18]

    Gu B, Shalom J, Cock IE. Anti-proliferative properties of terminalia sericea burch. Ex Dc leaf extracts against Caco2 and HeLa cancer cell lines. Pharmacogn J. 2018;10:408–15.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [19]

    Halder S, Bharal N, Mediratta PK, Kaur I, Sharma KK. Anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory and antinociceptive activity of Terminalia arjuna Roxb bark powder in mice and rats. Indian J Exp Biol. 2009;47:577–83.PubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [20]

    Ahmadi-Naji R, Heidarian E, Ghatreh-Samani K. Evaluation of the effects of the hydroalcoholic extract of Terminalia chebula fruits on diazinon-induced liver toxicity and oxidative stress in rats. Avicenna J Phytomedicine. 1968;7:454–66.Google Scholar

  • [21]

    Seedor J, Quartuccio H, Thompson D. The biphosphonate aledronate (MK–217) inhibits bone loss due to ovariectomy in rats. J Bone Miner Res. 1991;6:354–62.Google Scholar

  • [22]

    Bligh E, Dyer W. A rapid method of total lipid extraction and purification. Can J Biochem. 1959;37:911–7.Google Scholar

  • [23]

    Reyes-Gordillo K, Segovia J, Shibayama M, Vergara P, Moreno MG, Muriel P. Curcumin protects against acute liver damage in the rat by inhibiting NF-κB, proinflammatory cytokines production and oxidative stress. Biochim Biophys Acta - Gen Subj. 2007;1770:989–96.Web of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [24]

    Suzuki T, Douard V, Mochizuki K, Goda T, Ferraris RP. Diet-induced epigenetic regulation in vivo of the intestinal fructose transporter Glut5 during development of rat small intestine. Biochem J. 2011;435:43–53.CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [25]

    Högler W, Baumann U, Kelly D. Growth and bone health in chronic liver disease and following liver transplantation in children. Pediatr Endocrinol Rev. 2010;7:266–74.PubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [26]

    Cameron N, Schell LM, Knutsen KL. Human growth and development. Human growth and development. New York: Elsevier, 2002:165–95.Google Scholar

  • [27]

    Butler OD, Warwick BL, Cartwright TC. Slaughter and carcass characteristics of shortfed yearling, hereford, and brahman x hereford steers. J Anim Sci. 1956;15:93.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [28]

    Metges CC. Classical and post-genomic methods to study GIT function with emphasis on the pig. Livest Sci. 2010;133:10–19.CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [29]

    Chen W, Ai Q, Mai K, Xu W, Liufu Z, Zhang W, et al. Effects of dietary soybean saponins on feed intake, growth performance, digestibility and intestinal structure in juvenile Japanese flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus). Aquaculture. 2011;318:95–100.CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [30]

    Tolman KG. Defining patient risks from expanded preventive therapies. Am J Cardiol. 2000;85:15E–9E.PubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [31]

    Araujo IC, Andrade RP, Santos F, Soares ES, Yokota R, Mostarda C, et al. Early developmental exposure to high fructose intake in rats with NaCl stimulation causes cardiac damage. Eur J Nutr. 2016;55:83–9183.CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [32]

    De Moura RF, Ribeiro C, De Oliveira JA, Stevanato E, De Mello MAR. Metabolic syndrome signs in Wistar rats submitted to different high-fructose ingestion protocols. Br J Nutr. 2009;101:1178–84.Web of ScienceCrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [33]

    Hong HC, Hwang SY, Ryu JY, Yoo HJ, Seo JA, Kim SG, et al. The synergistic impact of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and metabolic syndrome on subclinical atherosclerosis. Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2016;84:203–9.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [34]

    Kneeman JM, Misdraji J, Corey KE. Secondary causes of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Therap Adv Gastroenterol. 2012;5:199–207.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [35]

    Chan SMH, Zeng X-Y, Sun R-Q, Jo E, Zhou X, Wang H, et al. Fenofibrate insulates diacylglycerol in lipid droplet/ER and preserves insulin signaling transduction in the liver of high fat fed mice. BBA - Mol Basis Dis. 2015;1852:1511–9.Web of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [36]

    Ferreira AVM, Parreira GG, Porto LCJ, Mario EG, Delpuerto HL, Martins AS, et al. Fenofibrate prevents orotic acid–induced hepatic steatosis in rats. Life Sci. 2008;82:876–83.Web of ScienceCrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [37]

    Thulin P, Rafter I, Stockling K, Tomkiewicz C, Norjavaara E, Aggerbeck M, et al. PPARα regulates the hepatotoxic biomarker alanine aminotransferase (ALT1) gene expression in human hepatocytes. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 2008;231:1–9.CrossrefPubMedWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [38]

    Reichling JJ, Kaplan MM. Clinical use of serum enzymes in liver disease. Dig Dis Sci. 1988;33:1601–14.CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [39]

    Oettl K, Birner-Gruenberger R, Spindelboeck W, Stueger HP, Dorn L, Stadlbauer V, et al. Oxidative albumin damage in chronic liver failure: relation to albumin binding capacity, liver dysfunction and survival. J Hepatol. 2013;59:978–83.PubMedWeb of ScienceCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [40]

    UGM DC, Dos Santos RAS, Silva ME, De Lima WG, Campagnole-Santos MJ, Alzamora AC. Age-dependent effect of high-fructose and high-fat diets on lipid metabolism and lipid accumulation in liver and kidney of rats. Lipids Health Dis. 2013;12:136.CrossrefWeb of SciencePubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [41]

    Kanuri G, Spruss A, Wagnerberger S, Bischoff SC, Bergheim I. Fructose-induced steatosis in mice: role of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1, microsomal triglyceride transfer protein and NKT cells. Lab Investig. 2011;91:885–95.CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [42]

    Palekar NA, Naus R, Larson SP, Ward J, Harrison SA. Clinical model for distinguishing nonalcoholic steatohepatitis from simple steatosis in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Liver Int. 2006;26:151–6.PubMedCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [43]

    Chen Y-L, Hsu C-Y, Huang W-C, Chen C-L, Lee P-T, Chang T-Y, et al. Fenofibrate reversibly increases serum creatinine level in chronic kidney disease patients by reducing glomerular filtration rate. Acta Nephrol. 2011;25:1–4.Google Scholar

  • [44]

    Cavalcanti AM, Baggio CH, Freitas CS, Rieck L, Silva De Sousa R, Da Silva-Santos JE, et al. Safety and antiulcer efficacy studies of Achillea millefolium L. after chronic treatment in Wistar rats. J Ethnopharmacol. 2006;107:277–84.CrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

  • [45]

    Fan C-Y, Wang M-X, Ge C-X, Wang X, Li J-M, Kong L-D. Betaine supplementation protects against high-fructose-induced renal injury in rats. J Nutr Biochem. 2014;25:353–62.Web of ScienceCrossrefPubMedGoogle Scholar

About the article

Received: 2018-03-19

Accepted: 2018-05-23

Published Online: 2018-06-21

Author contributions: All the authors have accepted responsibility for the entire content of this submitted manuscript and approved submission.

Research funding: This work was supported by the University of the Witwatersrand, Faculty of Health Sciences Research Office, the Oppenheimer Memorial Trust, and the National Research Foundation.

Employment or leadership: None declared.

Honorarium: None declared.

Competing interests: The funding organization(s) 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.

Citation Information: Journal of Complementary and Integrative Medicine, Volume 16, Issue 1, 20180035, ISSN (Online) 1553-3840, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jcim-2018-0035.

Export Citation

© 2019 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston.Get Permission

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in