Bangladeshi researchers studied the effectiveness of Bangladeshi ethnomedicinal plants against liver disease and found that they stabilized altered hepatic biochemical markers caused by hepatotoxins in most cases, according to a study published in the Journal of Ethno-pharmacy.
Liver diseases such as alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (AATD) account for approximately 1 million deaths globally each year. The authors of this study noted that many novel hepatoprotective drugs are derived from phytochemicals from natural resources. Various studies have demonstrated the efficacy of medicinal plants for therapeutic purposes while also ensuring cultural preservation, given their long history of usage.
The researchers of this study identified hepatoprotective plants and their phytoconstituents, with the hopes that these phytoconstituents can be integrated into liver drug research. A thorough literature review was carried out using various electronic databases using the primary keywords “Bangladesh,” “hepatoprotective agent,” and “ethnomedical plants.”
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This methodology led researchers to investigate 32 plant species for their hepatoprotective features; however, they found 20 among them that demonstrated sound evidence of conferring hepatoprotective benefits. These plants included thymoquinone, berberine, ursolic acid, luteolin, andrographolide, and more.
According to the researchers, therapeutic use of these plants managed to return deranged liver parameters to normal as well as cause albumin and total protein levels to rise. These plants included aminotransferase (ALT), serum aspartate aminotransferase (AST), and alkaline phosphatase (ALP).
The evidence-based efficacy of the extracts of certain Bangladeshi leaves and plants demonstrated their potential to become key ingredients in the development of new hepatoprotective drugs. The authors of this study concluded, “Flavonoids, phenolic acids, monoterpenoids, diterpenoids, triterpenoids, alkaloids, chromenes, capsaicinoids, curcuminoids, and anthraquinones are among the phytoconstituents that were appraised to have hepatoprotective activities.”
Das R, Mitra S, Tareq AM, et al. Medicinal plants used against hepatic disorders in Bangladesh: a comprehensive review. Journal of Ethnopharmacology. Published online September 1, 2021. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2021.114588