Nigerian Journal of Health and Biomedical Sciences

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The effect of ethanolic stem extract of Gongronema latifolium on blood glucose of normal and alloxan induced diabetic rabbits

RA Oshinubi, PM Emeke, O Awodele


The stem of Gongronema latifolium, an edible vegetable, is used by traditional healers in the Western part of Nigeria as part of concoction in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus. The hypoglycaemic and the antihyperglycaemic properties of ethanolic stem extract were studied on normal and alloxan induced diabetic rabbits. Single oral administration of the ethanolic extract to fasted normal rabbits during an oral glucose tolerance test significantly enhanced the clearance of glucose from blood at 500mg/kg and 750mg/kg body weight as compared to the controls(P<0.05). The highest reduction (44%) in the plasma glucose was produced by the latter dose at 4hours of glucose administration. In the alloxan induced rabbits, the extract produced a significant antihyperglycaemic effect within the fifth day of treatment with the 750mg/kg daily dosing. It reduced the initial hyperglycaemia by 35% after 2 weeks of treatment, better than the 500mg/kg daily dosing. Glibenclamide 10mg/kg daily showed a greater effect than the extract dosing by reducing the initial hyperglycemia by 73% in two weeks. The ethanolic stem extract of G. latifolium possesses hypoglycaemic activity with a moderate antihyperglycaemic property, in a dose dependent fashion.

Keywords: Gongronema latifolium, stem, ethanol, alloxan, blood glucose, rabbits

Nigerian Journal of Health and Biomedical Sciences Vol. 5 (2) 2006: 39-44
AJOL African Journals Online