Turkish Journal of Biology




Prevention and treatment of various degenerative diseases using traditional medicines is increasingly generating interest, especially in geriatric clinical research. This study aimed to evaluate the free-radical scavenging properties and potential to prevent DNA damage (from oxidative stress) of 56 extracts (polar and non-polar) from 14 medicinal plants (from 12 families) used by diverse Indian tribes and ethnic groups. Although widely known for traditional uses, these plants have not been extensively used for clinical purposes. Scavenging of DPPH^{\bullet} radical by all the extracts was evaluated to estimate their antioxidant potential and rank them accordingly. Extracts occupying the top 10 ranks were further evaluated and extensively screened for their antioxidant potential by estimation of their ABTS^{\bullet+}-scavenging and Fe^{+3}-reducing properties. A cumulative ranking system was designed for these 10 plant extracts based on the results of the 3 antioxidant assays. Simultaneously, protection of DNA against photolyzed H_2O_2-induced oxidative damage by all 56 extracts was studied in pBR322. Considerable anti-genotoxic potential was exhibited by the top 3 extracts on the cumulative rank table, thereby proving the results of all the experiments were congruent. This is a preliminary report, which may yield a roadmap for isolating the active components from these extracts and designing geriatric medicines.


Tribal medicinal plants, antioxidant, oxidative damage, DNA protection, DPPH, ABTS

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