Alexandria University, Egypt
Currently an Associate Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in the Faculty of Pharmacy, Alexandria University, Egypt. He is interested in investigation of the biological importance of some medicinal plants.
Background: The liver is an essential organ in medication disposal and detoxification. The current study aims to assess the hepatoprotective effect of Plantago Psyllium L. seed extract against the carbon tetrachloride intoxicated rats.
Methods: Male albino wistar rats were categorised into five groups (10 rats each). Hepatotoxicity was induced by carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) administration for a period of 9 weeks.
Results: Treatment of rats with Psyllium seed ethanol extract could significantly alleviate the toxic effects of CCl4. This was evidenced by the restoration of the level of different conventional liver biomarkers. Moreover, we analysed several oxidative biomarkers such as lipid peroxidation, reduced glutathione and catalase enzyme levels. Furthermore, it was demonstrated that all fractions showed dose dependent antioxidant activity using DPPH assay. The substantial antioxidant potential was displayed by the ethyl acetate fraction. The same pattern of results was shown with Phosphomolybdate and total phenolic and flavonoid assays. The promising results of antioxidant activity of ethyl acetate fraction provoked us for performing further HPLC/UV-DAD analysis of the mentioned fraction, which showed high content of chicoric acid and its derivatives. Our data show that these biomarker levels were restored to near normal values. To confirm our results, a histopathological study was conducted. Hispathological data indicated that Psyllium extract safeguarded the liver architecture to close typical. Finally, we employed western blot technique to assess TNF-α protein level. Intoxication with carbon tetrachloride lead to an increase in the TNF-α expression level. Importantly, treatment with Psyllium seed ethanol extract resulted in a decreased expression level of TNF-α in comparison to that of CCl4 treatment.
Conclusion: The data presented in the current study on Psyllium seeds have demonstrated their potential hepatoprotective properties compared to the standard silymarin natural medicine. This effect may be due to the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effect of Psyllium extract.