Anti-diabetic effect of Capparis spinosa L. root extract in diabetic rats

Document Type: Original Research Article


1 Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, University of Qom, Qom, Iran

2 Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, Qom University of Medical Sciences, Qom, Iran

3 Anesthesiology Section, Qom University of Medical Sciences, Qom, Iran


Objective: Diabetes mellitus is the most common metabolic disorders with severe impact on quality of life. Reducing serum glucose levels and normalization of serum lipid is of great clinical importance for treating diabetes. To our knowledge, there are not any evidences about the anti-diabetic action of capparis spinosa root. In the present study the effects of the C. spinosa root extract on diabetic metabolic disorders have been studied in experimental diabetes.
Materials and Methods: Rats were divided into six groups: normal control (NC), diabetic control (DC), diabetic rats receiving 0.2, 0.4 g/kg of plant extract or 0.6 mg/kg glibenclamide (groups D0.2, D0.4 or DG respectively). A normal group of rats was also designed to receive 0.2 g/kg of plant extract (N0.2). Rats were rendered diabetic (streptozotocin 60 mg/kg, i.p.) and treated with 0.2, 0.4 g/ kg of plant extract or glibenclamide for four weeks. At the end of the experiment, blood was drawn through heart puncture under deep anesthesia. Weight was measured weekly, glucose levels were measured at the first and fourth week and lipid profiles, insulin and liver enzymes at the end of the study.
Results: Glucose levels significantly decreased after treating with plant extract (p=0.003). However, insulin levels did not increase in any treating groups. Plant extract could significantly raise HDL and reduce levels of LDL and liver enzymes (ALT and ALP).
Conclusion: These results showed that C. spinosa rootextract could improve diabetic related metabolic derangement such as hyperglycemia, dyslipidemia, and elevated liver markers in an insulin-independent manner.


Main Subjects

Asgary S, Rahimi P, Mahzouni P, Madani H. 2012. Antidiabetic effect of hydroalcoholic extract of Carthamus tinctorius L. in alloxan-induced diabetic rats. J Res Med Sci, 17: 386-392
Brownlee M. 2001. Biochemistry and molecular cell biology of diabetic complications. Nature, 414: 813 – 20.
Dey L, Attele AS and Yuan CS. 2002. Alternative therapies for type 2 diabetes. Altern Med Rev, 7: 45-58.
Eddouks M, Lemhadri A, Michel JB. 2005. Hypolipidemic activity of aqueous extract of Capparisspinosa L. in normal and diabetic rats. J Ethnopharmacol, 98: 345-50
Eddouks M, Lemhardi A and Micel JB. 2004. Caraway and caper: potential antihyperglycaemic plants in diabetic rats. J Ethnopharmacol, 94: 143-148.
Fabiane K, Ricardo S, Oliveira T, Nagem TJ, Pinto AD, Oliveira MG, Soares JF. 2001. Effect of flavonoids morin; quercetin and nicotinic acid on lipid metabolism of rats experimentally fed with triton. Braz Arch Biol Techn, 44: 263-267.
Grover JK, Yadav S, Vats V. 2002. Medicinal plants of India with anti-diabetic potential. J Ethnopharmacol, 8: 81-100.
González-Villalpando C, López-Ridaura R, Campuzano JC, González-Villalpando ME. 2010. The status of diabetes care in Mexican population: Are we making a difference? Results of the National Health and Nutrition Survey 2006. Salud Publica Mex, 52: S36–46.
Inzuchi, S.E, Maggs D.G, Spollett G.R, Page S.L. Rite F.S, Walton V. 1998. Efficacy and metabolic effect of Metformin and troglitazon in type II diabetes mellitus. N Engl J Med, 338: 867-872.
Khan A, Anderson RA. 2003. Insulin potentiating factor (IPF) present in foods, species and natural products. Pak J Nutr, 2: 254-257.
Khanfar M.A, Sabri S.S, Zarga M.H, Zeller K.P. 2003. The chemical constituents of Capparis spinosa of Jordanian origin. Nat Prod Res, 17: 9-14.
Matsuyama T, Shoji K, Takase H, Kamimaki I, Tanaka Y, Otsuka A, et al. 2007. Effects of phytosterols in diacylglycerol as part of diet therapy on hyperlipidemia in children. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr, 16: 40-48.
Matthaus, B, Ozcan M. 2005. Glucosinolates and fatty acid, sterol, and tocopherol composition of seed oils from Capparis spinosa Var. spinosa and Capparis ovata Desf. Var. canescens (Coss.) Heywood. J Agric Food Chem, 53: 7136-7141.
Moon J1, Lee SM, Do HJ, Cho Y, Chung JH, Shin MJ. 2012. Quercetin Up-regulates LDL Receptor Expression in HepG2 Cells. Phytother Res, 26: 1688–1694.
Nesto R. 2001. CHD: a major burden in type 2 diabetes. Acta Diabetol, 38: 3 – 8.
NRC (National Research Council). 1996. Institute of Laboratory Animal Resources, Commission on Life Sciences. Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals. Washington, D.C, National Academy Press.
 Samarghandian S, Hadjzadeh M, Amin Nya F, Davoodi S. 2012. Antihyperglycemic and antihyperlipidemic effects of guar gum on streptozotocin-induced diabetes in male rats. Pharmacogn Mag, 8: 65–72.
Scheen A.J. 1997. Drug treatment of non- insulin- dependent diabetes mellitus in the 1990s. Achievements and future developments. Drugs, 54: 355-368.
Sharaf M, El-Ansari MA, Saleh NA. 2000. Quercetin triglycoside from Capparis spinosa. Fitotetrapia, 71: 46-49.
Sparano, N, Seaton TL. 1998. Troglitazone in type II diabetes mellitus. Pharmacotherapy, 18: 539-548.
Tan MH, Johns D, Strand J, Madsbad S, Erikson JW, Clausen J, Konkoy CS, Herz M; GLAC Study Group. 2004. Sustained effect of pioglitazone vs. glibenclamid on insulin sensitivity, glycaemic control, and lipid profiles in patients with type 2 diabetes. Diabet Med, 21: 859-866.
Tripathi BK, Srivastava AK. 2006. Diabetes mellitus: complications and therapeutics .Med Sci Monit, 12: 130-147.
Tsai S, Shameli A, Santamaria P. 2008. CD8+ T cells  in  type 1 diabetes. Adv Immunol, 100: 79-124.
 Vessal M, Hemmati M, Vasei M. 2003. Antidiabetic effects of quercetin in streptozocin-induced diabetic rats. Comp Biochem Physiol C Toxicol Pharmacol, 135: 357-364.
Wild S, Roglic G, Green A, Sicree R, King H. 2004. Global prevalence of diabetes estimates for the year 2000 and projections for 2030. Diabetes Care, 27: 1047- 1053.
Yamamoto Y, Oue E. 2006. Antihypertensive effect of quercetin in rats fed with a high-fat high-sucrose diet. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem, 70: 933–939.
Yang T, Liu YQ, Wang CH, Wang ZT. 2008. Advances on investigation of chemical constituents, pharmacological activities and clinical applications of Capparis spinosa. Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi, 21: 2453-2458