Author(s): Ahmad M, Akhtar MS, Malik T, Gilani AH
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Abstract The seeds of Cuminum nigrum were screened phytochemically and were found to contain 8\% flavonoids and 0.01\% alkaloids. When studied for their effect on blood glucose levels, oral administration of the flavonoid contents of the plant caused a hypoglycaemic effect at a dose range of 0.5 to 1.5 g/kg, both in normal and alloxan-diabetic rabbits. The hypoglycaemic effect started 2 h after drug administration, reaching a maximum within 4-8 h and the blood glucose levels returned close to normal within 24 h of drug administration. The glibenclamide (5 mg/kg), produced a hypoglycaemic effect in the normal rabbits, whereas it had no effect on the blood glucose levels of alloxan-diabetic rabbits. The alkaloids isolated from C. nigrum seeds, however, failed to exert any significant hypoglycaemic effect in either the normal or diabetic rabbits. A 7 day acute toxicity study in rabbits did not produce any apparent adverse effect at doses as high as 5 g/kg orally. These data indicate that the total flavonoid contents of C. nigrum seeds exhibited considerable hypoglycaemic activity in rabbits and may therefore be responsible for the previously reported antidiabetic activity of the seeds. Furthermore, it is conceivable that the C. nigrum flavonoids possess insulin triggering and/or insulin-like properties. Copyright 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
This article was published in Phytother Res
and referenced in Journal of Developing Drugs