Open Access Highly Accessed Open Badges Research article

Antioxidant, antiglycation and cytotoxicity evaluation of selected medicinal plants of the Mascarene Islands

Fawzi M Mahomoodally1*, Anwar H Subratty1, Ameenah Gurib-Fakim23 and Muhammad Iqbal Choudhary4

Author affiliations

1 Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of Mauritius, Réduit, 230, Mauritius

2 Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Mauritius, Réduit, Mauritius

3 Center for Phytotherapy Research, Cyber Tower 2, Ebéne, Mauritius

4 H.E.J. Research Institute of Chemistry, International Center for Chemical and Biological Sciences, University of Karachi, Karachi, Pakistan

For all author emails, please log on.

Citation and License

BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2012, 12:165  doi:10.1186/1472-6882-12-165

Published: 29 September 2012



Many indigenous plants of Mascarene Islands have been used in folkloric medicine to manage diabetes but few species have received scientific attention. Selected traditional medicinal plants (Antidesma madagascariense Lam. -Euphorbiaceae (AM), Erythroxylum macrocarpum O.E.Schulz -Erythroxylaceae (EM), Pittosporum senacia Putterl -Pittosporaceae (PS), Faujasiopsis flexuosa Lam. C.Jeffrey -Asteraceae (FF), Momordica charantia Linn -Cucurbitaceae (MC) and Ocimum tenuiflorum L -Lamiaceae (OT) were evaluated for their antioxidant, antiglycation and cytotoxic potential in vitro.


Graded concentrations (1.25-100 μg/mL) of the crude methanolic and water extracts and fractions (dichloromethane, ethyl-acetate, n-butanol and water) were evaluated for abilities to scavenge 2,2-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl hydrate (DPPH), nitric oxide (NO), superoxide (SO) radicals and to inhibit lipoxygenase and formation of advanced glycation endproduct (AGE) in vitro. The MTT (3-(4, 5-dimethylthazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl tetrazonium bromide) cytotoxicity test was performed on 3T3 cell line.


Only IC50 for DPPH, SO, NO and lipoxygenase for AM, FF and OT crude extracts and fractions were comparable to ascorbic acid and quercetin activity. Crude aqueous extracts of AM and FF showed IC50 of 4.08 and 3.89 μg/mL respectively for lipoxygenase which was significantly lower (p < 0.05) than quercetin (10.86 ± 0.68 μg/mL). The three crude aqueous extracts of these plants and their n-butanol fractions also showed antiglycation activities (p < 0.05) comparable to aminoguanidine. Increasing concentrations (250-2000 μg/mL) of the six crude extracts (Methanol and water) and their fractions did not inhibit mitochondrial respiration as measured by MTT cytotoxicity assay.


AM, FF and OT crude extracts and fractions have potent antioxidant and antiglycation properties with no apparent cytotoxicity and might have prophylactic and therapeutic potentials in the management of diabetes and related complications. Our study tends to validate the traditional use of these medicinal herbs and food plants as complementary and alternative medicines.