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Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine ›› 2011, Vol. 9 ›› Issue (9): 1031-1038.doi: 10.3736/jcim20110915

• Original Experimental Research • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Gastric antisecretory and cytoprotective effects of leaf extracts of Amaranthus tricolor Linn. in rats

Venkatapura C. Devaraj1(), Burdipad G. Krishna2#br#   

  1. 1. Department of Pharmacology, Bioneeds Laboratory Animals and Preclinical Services, Bangalore 562111, India
    2. Department of Pharmacognosy, R. R College of Pharmacy, Bangalore 560090, India
  • Received:2011-04-23 Accepted:2011-06-16 Online:2011-09-20 Published:2011-09-15
  • Contact: C. Devaraj Venkatapura

Objective: The present study was aimed to evaluate the antiulcer activity of leaf extracts of Amaranthus tricolor Linn. (Amaranthaceae) in rats.

Methods: The effects of A. tricolor leaves on gastric secretion and the effect of gastric cytoprotection were evaluated using five different models of gastric ulcers: acetic acid-induced, pylorus ligation-induced, ethanol-induced, indomethacin-induced and ischemia-reperfusion-induced gastric ulcers. The different extracts, namely, ethanolic extract (EAT), petroleum ether extract (PEAT), chloroform extract (CAT) and ethyl acetate extract (EAAT) of A.tricolor leaves were administered at a dose of 200 mg/kg per oral (p.o.).

Results: The acute oral toxicity study revealed that all the extracts were safe up to 2 000 mg/kg, p.o; hence one-tenth of this dose was selected for evaluation of antiulcer activity. The EAT and EAAT (200 mg/kg, p.o.) showed gastric ulcer-healing effect in acetic acid-induced chronic gastric ulcers. The EAT and EAAT inhibited gastric secretion in pylorus-ligated rats and showed gastric cytoprotective effect in ethanol-induced and indomethacin-induced gastric ulcers, while PEAT and CAT showed no significant antiulcer effect.

Conclusion: The leaf extracts of A. tricolor are found to possess very good antiulcer property in the experimental animal models of gastric ulcers which is consistent with the literature report in folk medicine.

Key words: Amaranthus , plant extracts, stomach ulcer, cytoprotection, antiulcer agents, rats

Figure 1

Ulcer index of acetic acid-induced chronic gastric ulcers in ratsAll the values are presented as mean±standard error of mean, n=6. *P<0.05, **P<0.01, vs vehicle control group. CMC: carboxy methyl cellulose; EAT: ethanolic extract; PEAT: petroleum ether extract; CAT: chloroform extract; EAAT: ethyl acetate extract."


**P<0.01, vs vehicle control group. CMC: carboxy methyl cellulose; EAT: ethanolic extract; PEAT: petroleum ether extract; CAT: chloroform extract; EAAT: ethyl acetate extract; p.o.: per oral.

Group n Regenerated glandularepithelium
width (μm)
Capillary density in
196 mm2
Volume of collagen
content (μmol)
Surface epithelium
Vehicle control (0.5% CMC 10 mL/kg, p.o.) 6 238±6 2.95±0.35 0.09±0.21 116.50±9.50
Ranitidine (50 mg/kg, p.o.) 6 315±3** 4.65±0.45** 0.15±0.02** 125.16±5.10
EAT (200 mg/kg, p.o.) 6 360±5** 5.90±0.19** 0.19±0.01** 120.33±8.70
PEAT (200 mg/kg, p.o.) 6 275±6 2.85±0.26 0.06±0.01 112.85±3.20
CAT (200 mg/kg, p.o.) 6 298±4 3.20±0.58 0.08±0.05 109.13±5.60
EAAT (200 mg/kg, p.o.) 6 385±3** 6.05±0.22** 0.17±0.07** 120.35±8.50


Group n Ulcer index Free acidity
Total acidity
Total hexoses
Total proteins
Mucin content
Pepsin activity
Vehicle control (0.5% CMC
10 mL/kg, i.d.)
6 0.21±0.23 0.67±0.46 1.50±0.47 5.20±0.29 55.15±5.10 6.85±0.36 0.15±0.22
Ranitidine (50 mg/kg, i.d.) 6 0.12±0.22** 0.31±0.08** 0.61±0.14** 5.80±0.42 85.20±9.13** 7.20±2.19 0.17±0.31
EAT (200 mg/kg, i.d.) 6 0.14±0.51** 0.26±0.16** 0.61±0.27** 6.40±0.13 69.40±6.70 8.65±2.05* 0.12±0.01
EAAT (200 mg/kg, i.d.) 6 0.16±0.18* 0.46±0.30** 0.93±0.16** 4.80±0.27 73.65±5.25 7.98±2.12* 0.16±0.81


Group n Ethanol-induced Indomethacin-induced
Vehicle control (0.5% CMC 10 mL/kg, p.o.) 6 0.298±0.130 0.312±0.080
Misoprostol (200 μg/kg, p.o.) 6 0.085±0.110** 0.091±0.180**
EAT (200 mg/kg, p.o.) 6 0.123±0.010** 0.108±0.160**
EAAT (200 mg/kg, p.o.) 6 0.165±0.010* 0.142±0.300**


Treatment n Ulcer index
Vehicle control (0.5% CMC
10 mL/kg, p.o.)
6 0.249±0.030
Ranitidine (50 mg/kg, p.o.) 6 0.098±0.020**
EAT (200 mg/kg, p.o.) 6 0.113±0.010**
EAAT (200 mg/kg, p.o.) 6 0.176±0.010*
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