The role of aqueous extract of pineapple fruit parts on the healing of acute crush tendon injury

Nig Q J Hosp Med. 2010 Oct-Dec;20(4):223-7.


Background: The Pineapple plant contains the enzyme bromelain which has been acclaimed to reduce pain and swellings following acute muscle injuries as well as carotenoids and polyphenols which are powerful antioxidants. It is yet to be determined if these constituents are distributed throughout the plant and what effect they have on the healing of acute tendon injuries.

Objective: This study therefore investigated the effects of the aqueous extract of different parts of the pineapple plant on tenoblast proliferation and the tendon Malondialdehyde (MDA) level in the early stage of healing in a crush injury to the achilles tendon of Sprague-Dawley rats.

Methods: Forty male rats were divided randomly into five groups; all had induced crush injury to the left Achilles tendon. Group 1; injury and nil treatment, Group 2; leaves extract, Group 3; fruit flesh extract, Group 4; bark extract, Group 5; core extract. The extract was given at a dosage of 30 mg/kg body weight daily over the first 14 days post-injury. On the 15th day post injury, the animals were sacrificed and the tendons excised and processed for histological study and MDA assay.

Results: The flesh and bark extract induced a proliferation of tenoblasts which however was not significantly different from that of the untreated tendon while the leaves and core extracts reduced the population of the tenocytes. The flesh extract significantly (p < 0.05) reduced the MDA level while the leaves and core extract significantly (p < 0.001) increased it. The bark extract had no significant impact on the MDA level compared with the untreated tendon.

Conclusion: This study suggests that the anti-oxidant constituents of the pineapple plant are concentrated in the flesh while the bark and flesh extracts have the potential to promote healing by stimulating tenoblast proliferation.

MeSH terms

  • Achilles Tendon / drug effects*
  • Achilles Tendon / injuries*
  • Acute Disease
  • Administration, Oral
  • Ananas / chemistry*
  • Animals
  • Bromelains / pharmacology
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Fruit / chemistry
  • Male
  • Malondialdehyde / analysis
  • Phytotherapy*
  • Plant Bark / chemistry
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology
  • Plant Extracts / therapeutic use*
  • Plant Leaves / chemistry
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Water
  • Wound Healing / drug effects


  • Plant Extracts
  • Water
  • Malondialdehyde
  • Bromelains