Long-term anti-diabetic and anti-hyperlipidaemic effects of aqueous stem bark extract of Irvingia gabonensis in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats

Akhere A Omonkhua, Iyere O Onaoagbe, Israel A Fajimeye, Mukaila B Adekola, Zainab A Imoru


Irvingia gabonensis is used traditionally to treat diabetes. The antidiabetic effect of the seed extract
has been demonstrated in human and animal models. This study was designed to evaluate the long-term antidiabetic
and anti-hyperlipidaemic effects of aqueous stem bark extract of I. gabonensis in streptozotocin-induced
diabetic rats. Twenty four Wistar rats in three groups, normal control, diabetic control and I. gabonensis treated
diabetic rats (TDR) were used for this study. Diabetes was induced in 16 rats by intraperitoneal injection of
streptozotocin (STZ) at 65mg/kg body weight. Upon confirmation of diabetes, the treated diabetic rats were orally
(by gavage) given aqueous extract of I. gabonensis bark at 200 mg/kg body weight daily for 24 weeks. Body weight
was monitored weekly, while fasting blood sugar (FBS) and serum lipid profile (triglycerides, total cholesterol, LDLcholesterol
and HDL-cholesterol) were assessed at specific intervals for 24 weeks. I. gabonensis significantly
(P<0.05) reduced the FBS of the treated diabetic rats to normal control levels 2 weeks after the commencement of
treatment. The reduction of FBS was sustained till the end of the study (24 weeks). Furthermore, at various stages
of monitoring, the extract reduced the STZ-induced elevation of serum triglycerides, total cholesterol and LDLcholesterol,
and significantly (p<0.05) increased the STZ-induced decrease in HDL-cholesterol. Our study concludes
that aqueous stem bark extract of I. gabonensis possess significant long-term anti-diabetic and hypolipidaemic
effects. These anti-hyperlipidaemic effects as well as the presence of phytochemicals with recognizable anti-oxidant
effects will be useful in the treatment of diabetic complications.

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