Nutrition Colombia , Colombia, Monday, June 23 of 2014, 10:16

Almizclillo would be a natural antihypertensive source

According to a UNal Pharmacy Department research project

UN/DICYT According to a UNal Pharmacy Department research project an almizclillo extract could be used as a natural source against hypertension and with cardioprotective effects.


Also known as Croton schiedeanus Schltd, almizclillo has a popular tradition in Colombia, mostly in regions such as the municipality of Tocaima, in the Province of Cundinamarca, where it is commonly used for high blood pressure.


A claimed by UNal professor Mario Francisco Guerrero Pabón, whom along with his research team and support from phytochemists embarked on researching more on the usefulness of the plant.


“We perceived the need to delve into the subject matter knowing that hypertension, for instance is a serious public health issue in Colombia and Latin America,” said Guerrero.


Up to now, the test –satisfactory till the end– was carried out with rats which were induced hypertension by inhibiting important pressure control agents, such as nitric oxide.


The work group researched several types of medicinal plants, focusing on almizclillo and others such as Calea glomerata Klatt, Curatella americana L. and Lupinus amandus.


“Popular wisdom of the plant speaks about a leaf infusion. They are gathered, prepared, heated and consumed. On the contrary we performed a more rigorous process by using an aqueous and ethanol extract which helped us in our research”, said Guerrero.


To perform the experimental process researchers gathered, dried and milled the material to obtain an extract, extracting ethanol by rotating evaporation and finally prepared material to be taken orally.


“We took the task of isolating metabolites (molecules produced or used during metabolism) responsible for pharmacological activity and identifying antihypertensive action mechanisms,” said Professor Guerrero.


According to the research project there is plentifulness of flavonoid (which have useful medicinal properties to diminish risk of heart diseases) and terpenoid (which have vasodilatory effects) metabolites.


Although individually these metabolites have great effects, researchers concluded that separately they do not have great effectiveness than with the extract.


“The mixture is very interesting because these elements are inter-dependent and allow us to pose a question such as why not have a antihypertensive phyto-therapeutic provided that it is tested in humans, although this will be performed at a later stage,” said Guerrero.


Results of the research project are published, “El almizclillo como fuente natural antihipertensiva” (Almizclillo as a natural antihypertensive source), published by the UNal-Bogotá Research Directorate.