Effect of methanolic extract of Allium sativum (AS) in delaying cataract in STZ-induced diabetic rats

J Ocul Biol Dis Infor. 2008 Mar;1(1):46-54. doi: 10.1007/s12177-008-9003-5. Epub 2008 Jul 19.


Glycemic-induced stress is a major culprit contributing to oxidative insult that has far-reaching effects in diabetic cataract worldwide. In an attempt to prevent/delay cataract, many therapeutic agents have been identified, and among these, natural dietary sources have gained pharmacological significance. Hence, we investigated the efficacy of the methanolic garlic extract against diabetic cataract in Wistar rats. Methanolic garlic extract scavenged the transition metal ion-generated H(2)O(2) with an IC(50) of 768.8 +/- 1.76 mug/ml, showing its potential ability as an antioxidant. We have noticed lenticular opacity and oxidative damage in streptozotocin (STZ)-induced hyperglycemic rats. This is evident by the elevation of Ca(2+), Cu(2+), Na(+), Mg(2+), thiobarbituric acid reacting substances (TBARS), and carbonyl content and increased activities of polyol enzymes, glutathione peroxidase (GPx), superoxide dismutase (SOD), and up regulation of iNOS transcript and protein aggregation/cross-linking followed by a decrease in reduced glutathione (GSH), K(+) content, and tryptophan fluorescence in the cataractous lenses of STZ-induced diabetic rats. Garlic administration in a dose-dependent manner attenuated the glycemia-mediated oxidative stress as all the parameters have been found normalized more or less to that of control rats and thus delaying the progression of the lens opacity. We conclude that garlic extract has hypoglycemic and anti oxidant properties that can delay the progression of cataract as revealed in this study.

Keywords: Allium sativum; Cataract; Garlic; Methanolic extract; STZ-induced diabetic rats.