Monday, 9 March 2015

Tafadzwa Taderera, Lameck Shoriwa Chagonda Gome E. and Shai J.L. receive Stanford Research Award-2015 in Pharmacy

Breaking News: Tafadzwa Taderera, Lameck Shoriwa Chagonda Gome E. and Shai J.L. receive Stanford Research Award-2015 in Pharmacy

Tafadzwa Taderera, Lameck Shoriwa Chagonda Gome E. and Shai J.L. receive Stanford Research Award-2015 in Pharmacy

08 March, 2015, Zimbabwe, USA NEWS CORP

Much awaited award was announced this week. Finally Zimbabwe wins World Stanford Research Award-2015 in Pharmacy. Thousands of nominations from several countries were received for international competition. The noble work is screened which distinguish from the rest, in different aspects of the Pharmacy. The award is introduced to highlight excellent think tanks on global platform. The research findings were published on world’s prestigious International Journal of Pharmacy. DM mellitus has become a worldwide disease. Some local TMPs in Zimbabwe are reported to have hypoglycaemic effects on blood glucose and are used as herbal medicines to treat diabetes. A. stenophylla aqueous root extracts were freeze dried and examined for inhibition of α-glucosidase and α-amylase on KAT reagents in the presence of sucrose and maltose substrates using acarbose as positive control. The IC50 values for the plant extract and acarbose for α-glucosidase in the presence of the sucrose were 0.123 ± 0.009 mg/ml and 0.101± 0.0176 mg/ml respectively. The IC50 values in the presence of maltose were 0.500 ± 0.128 mg/ml and 0.117 ± 0.0563 mg/ml respectively. The plant extract and acarbose showed IC50 values against amylase of 1.26 ± 0.903 mg/ml and 1.199 ± 0.0651 mg/ml respectively. The plant extract displayed mixed type inhibition kinetics for α-glucosidase with sucrose reducing Vmax value of the enzyme from 0.214 to 0.0608 mmoles. min–1 whilst increasing Km from 0.0124 to 0.0580. The results suggest A. stenophylla possesses hypoglycaemic control in diabetes mellitus through inhibition of α-glucosidase and α-amylase enzymes and its standardisation could transform herbal practice in treating diabetes. A. stenophylla root extracts inhibited α-glucosidase and α-amylase enzymes in vitro in the presence of carbohydrate substrates. A. stenophylla inhibition for the enzymes was comparable to acarbose, a drug used for the hypoglycaemic control in T2DM. A. stenophylla exhibited mixed inhibition in exerting its antihyperglycaemic activity. The results confirm the use of A. stenophylla in treating DM in traditional medicine and further research should be carried out to standardise its herbal extracts for clinical trials. The results were carried out using plant materials gathered in the wild from a single geographical location in summer. There may be geographical site and seasonal variations in the results. The study should be carried using plants from different geographical locations to determine any variations. The plants should be cultivated to avoid variations in geographical and environmental condition. Studies should be carried out to determine seasonal effects on the results. The plant extracts should be standardised and clinically tested. International finance/collaboration should be encouraged to expand the scope of such promising results. Modern hypoglycaemic drugs used to treat diabetes work by different mechanisms whilst traditional herbs often operate by multiple mechanisms in combating DM. Many developing countries still use traditional herbs alongside Western medicines. We have investigated the hypoglycaemic properties of A. stenophylla as it is used to treat diabetes in our traditional practice. In the present work, we examined its potential to inhibit key metabolic enzymes to determine possible mechanisms of action. Such work would promote its use, standardisation and clinical evaluation of its herbal extracts. The present work demonstrated that A. stenophylla inbibited both α-glucosidase and α-amylase enzymes in order to achieve glycaemic control and confirming its use in traditional medicine to treat diabetes. The extract achieved comparable inhibitory activity for sucrose with acarbose, an effective a-glucosidase used as an antidiabetic drug. It displayed mixed enzyme inhibition. These findings indicate the potential to develop A. stenophylla products for the control of DM. Further studies are underway to explore other relevant multiple mechanisms consistent with findings from traditional practices in India and China on hypoglycaemic herbs. Governments in developing countries should take an active role in exploiting their unique natural products through providing generous research funds. International donors, financiers, collaborating institutions, organisations and interest groups could play a crucial role in providing funds to achieve the goal of ‘Health for All’ in the long run. The experimental work was carried out by Tafadzwa Taderera and is part of ongoing PhD research. Professor Lameck Chagonda is the lead supervisor and corresponding author. I declare there is no competing interest amongst the authors. The authors are grateful for the research funds from Southern African Consortium for Research Excellence (SACORE), the University of Zimbabwe Research Board and to the Biomedical Department of Tshwane University of Technology for technical assistance.
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