Pistacia lentiscus (Anacardiaceae) is commonly used in folk medicine to treat various diseases. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the hepatoprotective and antioxidant activities of extracts of P. lentiscus leaves (PL) and fruits (PF) against experimentally induced liver damage. Furthermore, characterization of extracts was attempted by a spectroscopic methodology (Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy) and high-performance liquid chromatography with diode array detection analysis. A hepatoprotective potential against paracetamol [165 mg/kg body weight (b.w.)] toxicity was noticed in mice pretreated with the same dose of PL or PF extract (125 mg/kg b.w.) or a combination of both (PL/PF 63/63 mg/kg b.w.), as revealed by an analysis of biochemical parameters (alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, and alkaline phosphatase activities and total bilirubin). These results were confirmed by histological examination of the liver, which revealed significant protection against paracetamol-induced hepatic necrosis. Furthermore, PF extract exhibited a promising antidiabetic activity in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats, similar to the reference drug glibenclamide (0.91 g/L), a result confirmed by in vitro inhibition of α-amylase. We demonstrated that the leaf crude extract showed the best effect in all tested methods, compared to its fruit counterpart, probably due to the presence of higher amounts of phenolic compounds, as determined by phytochemical and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy analyses. Moreover, high-performance liquid chromatography with diode array detection led to the identification of six compounds for each part of the plant. Gallic acid, a characteristic compound of Pistacia species, was most abundant in leaves and fruits, while luteolin was detected for the first time in fruits. Obtained activities of P. lentiscus extracts may well be due, at least in part, to the presence of the above compounds. © 2016

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