Great efforts are ongoing in understanding and management of diabetes, the disease and disease-related complications are increasingly unabated. In spite of the presence of known antidiabetic medicine in the pharmaceutical market, remedies from medicinal plants are used with success to treat this disease. In the present investigation an attempt is made to study the beneficial effects of Basella rubra in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats and validate its traditional claim. The diabetes-induced rats were fed with Basella rubra (400 mg/100 gm body weight orally through a gavage), when tested after ingestion the fasting blood glucose levels were remarkably reduced to normal and liver glycogen content was remarkably increased. In pancreatic sections of diabetic rats fed with B. rubra, the islets were normal comparable to diabetic controlled rats (insulitis was observed). In liver, the changes caused after induction of diabetes was global microvesicular steatosis. The portal tracts appeared normal and central veins appeared congested, which was brought back to normal after feeding with B. rubra. While, in the kidney sections, of diabetic control rats and diabetic rats fed with B. rubra no histopathological changes were noticed. The results demonstrate that the leaf pulp of B. rubra possesses a strong hypoglycemic effect in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats, thus supporting its traditional use in diabetes mellitus control.
Key words: Basella rubra (B. rubra), hypoglycemic effect, pancreas, streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats, blood glucose.
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