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Purpose: To evaluate the antihyperlipidemic efficacy and phytochemical constituents of Vernonia elaeagnifolia aqueous leaf extract.
Method: Qualitative phytochemical analysis of V. elaeagnifolia leaves was performed. Thirty healthy albino rabbits were divided into six groups (n = 6). Cholesterol powder (0.5 g/kg) in 10 mL coconut oil (vehicle) was given orally to induce hyperlipidemia. The aqueous leaf extract of Vernonia elaeagnifolia was administered at 250 mg/kg and 500 mg/kg per oral. Lipid profile, hepatic enzymes and oxidative stress markers were evaluated.
Results: Phytochemical screening indicated the presence of tannins, proteins, flavonoids, phenols, alkaloids and saponins. Oral administration of cholesterol powder significantly (p < 0.05) raised the level of serum total cholesterol (TC), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-c) and triglyceride (TG) along with significant (p < 0.05) decrease in serum concentration of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDLc). Concentration of serum TC, LDL-c, TG and liver enzymes was significantly reduced in V. elaeagnifolia-treated groups. The levels of oxidative stress markers were restored to normal when the animals were treated with V. elaeagnifolia leaf extract; increased levels of antioxidant enzymes were observed.
Conclusion: The aqueous leaf extract of V. elaeagnifolia possesses antihyperlipidemic and antioxidant potentials that are dose-dependent. However, further studies are required to develop the plant for therapeutic applications.
Keywords: Hyperlipidemia, Oxidative stress markers, Cholesterol, Vernonia elaeagnifolia