In this study, the effect of Gmelina arborea aqueous extract, a medicinal plant used in the treatment of hypertension, on rat blood pressure was investigated. After harvest, leaves of G. arborea were dried, reduced in powder and used for aqueous extract preparation. The aqueous extract was administrated at 500 mg/kg/day to Wistar rats, which has been made hypertensive by NG-Nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME), treatment at 20 mg/kg/day. Alkaloid compounds, tannins, anthocyanins, leucoanthocyanins, mucilages and saponins were detected in G. arborea leaves. 7 and 14 days administration of L-NAME induced an increase of mean arterial blood pressure from 99±4 mmHg to respectively 155±2 and 179±10 mmHg. G. arborea leaves extract reduced these blood pressures to respectively 126±13 and 147±7 mmHg. These data confirm the antihypertensive effect of G. arborea leaves. Further investigations will analyze the active compounds and the molecular mechanisms underlying this pharmacological effect.
Key words: Hypertension, L-NAME, medicinal plant, G. arborea.
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