Free Radical Scavenging and Cyto-protective Activity of Ethanolic Extract of Nigella Sativa Seeds
Introduction: Free radicals and the oxidative stress have been implicated in a large number of chronic disorders such as Diabetes mellitus and its late complications, Cardio vascular disease, Arthritis also in some acute conditions such as the hemolytic disease in Glucose 6 Phosphate Dehydrogenase (G 6 PD) deficiency, where free radicals play a direct cytotoxic role causing cellular damage. Various exogenous substances have been found to be of great use for the purpose of scavenging free radicals. These includes micro nutrients such as vitamins eg. Vit C, Vit A etc or other dietary agents polyphenols, flavenols, tannins etc. In traditional medicine certain food items and their extracts are considered useful in combating conditions such as diabetes mellitus, Cardio vascular diseases etc and their long term complications that are caused by oxidative stress. Nigella Sativa seeds are one such condiment used in food in south east, central Asia and middle east and also used in ancient Indian (Ayurveda) and Greeko-arabic (Unani) systems of medicine. Material and Method: The objective of this study is to quantify the free radical scavenging and Cytoprotective effects of ethanolic extract of Nigella Sativa seeds. To measure the free radical scavenging activity DPPH free radical scavenging assay was used. To measure cyto-protective effects of Nigella Sativa seed extract, an AAPH assay was used with the Cyto-protective effect being measured on RBCs (Red blood cells) suspended in PBS buffer. Results: In the DPPH assay the ethanolic extract of Nigella Sativa seeds showed significant free radical scavenging activity. The activity was concentration dependent. Conclusion: In AAPH RBC lysis assay the ethanolic extract of Nigella Sativa seeds did show considerable protective effect against AAPH induced RBC lysis. Once again the activity was concentration dependent.
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