Glucose-lowering effect of xoconostle (Opuntia joconostle A. Web., Cactaceae) in diabetic rats Article uri icon


  • The anti-diabetic effect traditionally attributed to the mesocarpium and cladode of Opuntia joconostle was assessed experimentally in male wistar rats with streptozotocin-induced diabetes (40 mg/kg bodyweight). Groups of six diabetic and six healthy rats were dosed with either water or aqueous extracts of mesocarpium, cladode or a 50:50 mixture of both. The dose, defined through a screening experiment, was 100 mg/kg bodyweight of the freeze-dried aqueous extract, administered orally by esophageal cannula for 12 weeks. Variables assessed at weekly intervals were: blood levels of cholesterol, high-density lipoproteins (HDL), glucose and triglycerides. Total cholesterol and HDL levels were statistically similar among diabetic and healthy animals. A reduction (p < 0.001) in glucose concentration was observed in both healthy and diabetic rats dosed with the three O. joconostle supplements; this effect was most evident with the mesocarpium (72%25). Triglycerides decreased (p < 0.001) only in healthy rats. These findings reveal that O. joconostle possesses a glucose- and lipidlowering effect in both healthy and diabetes-induced rats; this suggests that the frequent consumption of O. joconostle by humans in the diet may contribute to prevent and control the complications associated with type-2 diabetes mellitus. © 2010 Academic Journals.

publication date

  • 2010-01-01