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S. W. Zito, N. Kunaparaju, T. Taldone, J. Shinde; Inhibition of Ocular Aldose Reductase by Extracts of Ayurvedic Herbs. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2007;48(13):5833.
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In diabetes, the polyol pathway which includes aldose reductase and sorbitol dehydrogenase, accelerates the formation of sorbitol from glucose in insulin-insensitive tissues leading to the development of cataracts in the lens. In the present study alcoholic extracts of 6 Indian Ayurvedic herbs were evaluated in vitro for their ability to inhibit aldose reductase isolated from rat lenses.
Powdered plant material was extracted with 70% ethanol in a soxhlet apparatus for 9-12 hours. The extract was concentrated in vacuo and the aqueous residue lyophilized. The dry extracts were dissolved in 0.1M phosphate buffer pH 7.4 (1mg/ml) for testing. Aldose reductase was prepared as the 5000g supernatant from a rat lens 10% homogenate in 0.1M phosphate buffer pH 7.4.
Wrightia tinctoria (Indrajav), Citrullus colocynthis (Indrayan), Aegle marmelos (Bael), Tinospora cordifolia (Giloe), Pongamia glabra (Karanja) and Terminalia chebula (Harad) in 1mg/ml concentrations inhibited aldose reductase to varying degrees. Indrajav (92.92%), bael (64.91%), giloe (72.33%) and harad (95.66%) were the most active and showed concentration dependent inhibition of aldose reductase with IC50’s of 5µg/ml, 50µg/ml, 85µg/ml and 3.1µg/ml respectively. Preliminary acid-base fractionation of the extracts showed inhibitory activity in both the neutral and acid fractions.
Ayurvedic medicinal herbs are a valuable source for novel aldose reductase inhibitors as lead compounds for the possible prevention of diabetic cataracts.
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