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Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Antioxidant activity, total phenolic and total flavonoid contents of whole plant extracts Torilis leptophylla L

Naima Saeed, Muhammad R Khan* and Maria Shabbir

Author Affiliations

Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, 45320, Pakistan

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BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2012, 12:221  doi:10.1186/1472-6882-12-221

Published: 16 November 2012

Abstract

Background

The aim of this study was to screen various solvent extracts of whole plant of Torilis leptophylla to display potent antioxidant activity in vitro and in vivo, total phenolic and flavonoid contents in order to find possible sources for future novel antioxidants in food and pharmaceutical formulations.

Material and methods

A detailed study was performed on the antioxidant activity of the methanol extract of whole plant of Torilis leptophylla (TLM) and its derived fractions {n-hexane (TLH), chloroform (TLC) ethyl acetate (TLE) n-butanol (TLB) and residual aqueous fraction (TLA)} by in vitro chemical analyses and carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) induced hepatic injuries (lipid peroxidation and glutathione contents) in male Sprague-Dawley rat. The total yield, total phenolic (TPC) and total flavonoid contents (TFC) of all the fractions were also determined. TLM was also subjected to preliminary phytochemical screening test for various constituents.

Results

The total phenolic contents (TPC) (121.9±3.1 mg GAE/g extract) of TLM while total flavonoid contents (TFC) of TLE (60.9 ±2.2 mg RTE/g extract) were found significantly higher as compared to other solvent fractions. Phytochemical screening of TLM revealed the presence of alkaloids, anthraquinones, cardiac glycosides, coumarins, flavonoids, saponins, phlobatannins, tannins and terpenoids. The EC50 values based on the DPPH (41.0±1 μg/ml), ABTS (10.0±0.9 μg/ml) and phosphomolybdate (10.7±2 μg/ml) for TLB, hydroxyl radicals (8.0±1 μg/ml) for TLC, superoxide radicals (57.0±0.3 μg/ml) for TLM and hydrogen peroxide radicals (68.0±2 μg/ml) for TLE were generally lower showing potential antioxidant properties. A significant but marginal positive correlation was found between TPC and EC50 values for DPPH, hydroxyl, phosphomolybdate and ABTS, whereas another weak and positive correlation was determined between TFC and EC50 values for superoxide anion and hydroxyl radicals. Results of in vivo experiment revealed that administration of CCl4 caused a significant increase in lipid peroxidation (TBARS) while decrease in GSH contents of liver. In contrast, TLM (200 mg/kg bw) and silymarin (50 mg/kg bw) co-treatment effectively prevented these alterations and maintained the antioxidant status.

Conclusion

Data from present results revealed that Torilis leptophylla act as an antioxidant agent due to its free radical scavenging and cytoprotective activity.

Keywords:
Torilis leptophylla; DPPH; Antioxidant; Oxidative stress; TBARS