A Systematic Review of in vitro Studies Conducted on Effect of Herbal Products on Secretion of Insulin from Langerhans Islets

Mohammad Abdollahi1, Ozra Tabatabaei-Malazy2, Bagher Larijani2

1Faculty of Pharmacy, and Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences
2Endocrinology and Metabolism Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


Purpose: Diabetes mellitus is the most important health problem that its prevalence is increasing. Diabetes is characterized by defects in insulin secretion, insulin action or both. Recent studies provided evidences that loss of functional β-cell mass through apoptosis is central to the development of diabetes. The management of diabetes without any side effects is still a challenge to the medical system. Recently, there has been a special interest to herbal medicine in care and management of diabetes due to their natural origin and less side effects. The current systematic review focuses on main component of antidiabetic plants with directly effect on insulin secretion of pancreas. Methods: All in vitro studies which assessed the potential effect of, main components, multi herbal, whole plant, or extract of the plants directly on pancreatic insulin secretion published from 2001 to November 2011 were included. Exclusion criteria were clinical trial studies that did not assess insulin secretion, and review articles, or letters to the editor. Results: The majority of these studies showed that the improvement of β-cell function and insulin secretion is possible with antioxidant compounds. Suppression of oxidative stress, cytokine-induced impairment, suppression of nuclear factor κB a key regulator of endothelial activation, activation of uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2), insulin-like activity and increasing intracellular calcium, were among the most important indicated pathways. Conclusions: By considering the role of oxidative stress in pathogenesis of β-cell dysfunction, antioxidant compounds could be helpful in management of diabetes and its complications.

J Pharm Pharm Sci, 15 (3): 447-466, 2012

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18433/J32W29