Determination of antioxidant potential of Salix aegyptiaca L. through biochemical analysis
Salix aegyptiaca L., commonly called musk willow, is a medicinal herb in use since ancient time. However, information on its mode of protective action is scanty. Considering its significance and wide applications, here, we explored the same using its hydroethanolic bark extract. The results of nitric oxide assay indicated the free radical scavenging ability of the bark extract. In the ex vivo study, the extract of bark was found to exert protective effects against protein and membrane damage caused by the Fenton’s reagent in the liver homogenate of C57BL/6 mice. In in vivo studies, the specific activities of enzymes involved in antioxidant function and the level of reduced glutathione (GSH) enhanced in the liver of six weeks old C57BL/6 mice treated with extract of bark. On the other hand, the oxidative damage in the liver determined in terms of TBARS was decreased significantly. The concomitant increase in the free radical metabolizing enzymes and the content of GSH; and inhibition of oxidative damage is suggestive of possibility of enhanced antioxidant potential of animals. The bark extract also enhanced the specific activities of phase I and phase II enzymes, which would likely to contribute in the detoxification. In conclusion, the S. aegyptiaca scavenges the free radicals, elevates the endogenous antioxidant status and detoxifies the toxic agents which determine its beneficial effects.
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