Therapeutic potential of an anti-diabetic formulation developed from bioactive plant extracts of Mangifera indica, Syzygium cumini and Balanites aegyptiaca in Uganda using Albino Rats
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The prevalence of diabetes in Sub-Saharan Africa is rapidly on the rise, being up to 9% in Uganda. Efforts to reduce these incidences majorly rely on changes in lifestyle, diet and treatment using synthetic drugs. However, these methods are associated with adverse effects, poor patient adherence and increased disease management costs. Exploring use of readily available, naturally growing plants including Mangifera indica, Syzygium cumini and Balanites aegyptiaca may be a cheaper alternative. In the current study, phytochemical composition, safety, and anti-hyperglycemic potential of a polyherbal formulation containing extracts of M. indica, S. cumini and B. aegyptiaca (MSB) were determined. Firstly, the LD50 of MSB polyherbal formulation was estimated before hyperglycemia (in varying levels) was induced in random groups of standardized Wistar albino rats using a single oral dose of alloxan monohydrate (170mg/Kg). The hyperglycaemic rats were then treated with different oral doses of either MSB formulation or metformin for up to 6 weeks. Blood glucose levels, weight and other signs related to hyperglycaemia were monitored throughout the experiment. Oral administration of MSB polyherbal preparation did not cause any observable acute toxicities or histological changes in target organs. The polyherbal preparation resulted in significant reduction of blood glucose levels among hyperglycaemic rats (up to 29.7% in the first week of treatment, P-value = 0.002), especially in the group where the condition had not progressed to a more severe chronic form. Therefore, MSB polyherbal formulation is safe when taken orally, and may significantly reduce blood glucose levels in diabetic patients.