Mukumbayi P. Mulumba, Raju Koneri*, Suman Sammadar


The purpose of this study was to investigate the antihypercholesterolemic effect of ethanol extract of Momordica cymbalaria (MC) and Momordica dioica (MD). Atherogenic diet-induced hyperlipidemia in rats and high cholesterol-diet-induced hypercholesterolemia in rabbits were used as models. In atherogenic diet-induced hyperlipidemia model, male wistar rats were randomly divided into eight groups (n=6); two control and six treatment groups. The control groups (I and II) was to receive either standard rats chow or atherogenic diet (AD), and the treatment groups (III to V) were fed a atherogenic diet with either 6mg/kg of lovastatin or 250, 500 mg/kg of MC, or 250, 500mg/kg MD for a 26 days period. Three additional treatment groups received standard rats chow with either 6mg/kg of lovastatin or 250, 500 mg/kg of MC, or 250, 500mg/kg of MD for a 26 days period. High cholesterol diet-induced hypercholesterolemia was designed in the same way: Control rabbits received either standard rabbits chow or high cholesterol diet (HCD) and the treatment groups (III to V) were fed a HCD with either 6mg/kg of lovastatin or 750 mg/kg of sponin fraction of MC, or 750mg/kg of saponin fraction of MD. three additional treatment groups received standard rabbits chow with either 6mg/kg of lovastatin or 250, 500 mg/kg of MC, or 250, 500mg/kg MD. HCD was given for 35 days, and treatments were given from 36th to 70th day, during this period, all animals were switched to normal diet. Plasma Triglycerides (TG), Total Cholesterol (TC), Low Density Cholesterol (LD-C), and Very Low Density Cholesterol (VLDL-C) were found to be significantly elevated after AD and HCD intake. Upon MC, MD and their respective saponin fractions treatment, These lipids levels were significantly reduced. High Density Cholesterol (HDL) which were significantly decreased in atherogenic diet and high cholesterol diet fed animals, were significantly increased upon MC, MD and their relative saponin fractions treatment. Furthermore, saponin fraction of both plants inhibited significantly 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A (HMG CoA) reductase enzyme responsible for endogen cholesterol synthesis.

Keywords: Hypercholesterolemia, Momordica cymbalaria, Momordica dioica, saponins, Hydroxy 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme A reductase enzyme.

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