Myrtus Communis Aqueous Extract is an Effective Inhibitor of in Vitro Oxidation of Human Serum LDL/VLDL


AbstractBackground: Myrtus communis L. (Fam. Myrtaceae) is distributed allover Iraq. It is a medicinal plant with a wide pharmacological actions. A solubilizing effect upon cholesterol gallbladder stones has already been reported.Objective: To investigate the effect of an aqueous extract of Myrtus communis L. on the oxidation of human serum low density lipoprotein (LDL)/ very low density lipoprotein (VLDL).Setting: Department of Pharmacology and Department of Biochemistry, College of Medicine, Al-Mustansiriya University, Baghdad-Iraq.Design: in vitro pharmacognoso-biochemical study.Methods: Human serum LDL/VLDL is treated, in vitro, with aqueous extract of Myrtus communis L., related to two morphological varieties. In another series of experiments, human serum LDL/VLDL is oxidized ,in vitro, with 5 μmol CuSO4 for three hours in presence or absence of an aqueous extract of Myrtus communis L.Results: Aqueous extract of Myrtus communis L. of both varieties showed a significant reduction in serum native oxidized -LDL/VLDL (ox-LDL/VLDL) level. Aqueous extracts of Myrtus communis L. inhibited CuSO4-induced oxidation of LDL/VLDL by 15.8% and 22.6% in respect to its morphological variety.Conclusion:Aqueous extract of Myrtus communis, of whatever variety, has inhibitory effects on oxidation of serum LDL/VLDL, whether it is native or induced by copper. These effects are most probably related to its content of polyphenolic compounds and Myrtus communis may be a useful medicinal plant in the prevention of development of atherosclerosis.Key words: Myrtus communis, Serum LDL, Oxidation, Polyphenolic compounds