Centella asiatica ameliorates diabetes-induced stress in rat tissues via influences on antioxidants and inflammatory cytokines

22 May 2019

Centella asiatica(L.) Urban (Family: Apiaceae) is a perennial herb that has been used to elevate mood, improvememory, treat wounds and manage kidney-related ailments in African traditional medicine practice. This studyevaluated the potential benefits ofC. asiatica(CA) on diabetes-induced stress in kidney and brain of rats.Following the induction ofdiabetes mellitus(DM), rats were orally treated with vehicle, CA or Metformin daily for14 days. After treatment, renal and brain levels of inflammatory cytokines, TNF-?, IFN-?, IL-4, and IL-10 wereassessed. Oxidant and antioxidant biomarkers were also evaluated. Phyto-compounds in the crude methanolextract of CA were analyzed by Gas Chromatography?Mass Spectroscopy. Diabetes increased malondialdehyde(MDA) concentration by 39%; elevated levels of TNF-?(44%) and IFN-?(20%); and reduced the antioxidantstatus in the kidney in comparison to normal control rats. In the brain, diabetic control rats had significantlygreater levels of MDA, TNF-?, and IFN-?(182%, 40%, and 20%, respectively) in addition to the lowered anti-oxidant status when compared to normal control rats. However, treatment with CA significantly reduced therenal levels of MDA (33%), TNF-?(78%), and IFN-?(42%) while that of IL-10 increased by 18% when comparedto diabetic control rats. In the brain, CA treatment elicited significant reductions in MDA (37%), TNF-?(30%),and IFN-?(37%) levels while those of IL-4 and IL-10 increased by 94% and 20% respectively. In addition, therenal and brain antioxidant status was significantly boosted by CA treatment. Several medicinal compoundsincluding ascorbic acid, asiatic acid, oleanolic acid, stevioside, stigmasterol, and?-humulene were identified inthe crude extract of CA. Findings from this study suggest CA may protect diabetic tissues from stressviaanti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory mechanisms that can be useful in the management of diabetic complications.