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      Berberine: Botanical Occurrence, Traditional Uses, Extraction Methods, and Relevance in Cardiovascular, Metabolic, Hepatic, and Renal Disorders

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          Abstract

          Berberine-containing plants have been traditionally used in different parts of the world for the treatment of inflammatory disorders, skin diseases, wound healing, reducing fevers, affections of eyes, treatment of tumors, digestive and respiratory diseases, and microbial pathologies. The physico-chemical properties of berberine contribute to the high diversity of extraction and detection methods. Considering its particularities this review describes various methods mentioned in the literature so far with reference to the most important factors influencing berberine extraction. Further, the common separation and detection methods like thin layer chromatography, high performance liquid chromatography, and mass spectrometry are discussed in order to give a complex overview of the existing methods. Additionally, many clinical and experimental studies suggest that berberine has several pharmacological properties, such as immunomodulatory, antioxidative, cardioprotective, hepatoprotective, and renoprotective effects. This review summarizes the main information about botanical occurrence, traditional uses, extraction methods, and pharmacological effects of berberine and berberine-containing plants.

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          Oxidative Stress, Prooxidants, and Antioxidants: The Interplay

          Oxidative stress is a normal phenomenon in the body. Under normal conditions, the physiologically important intracellular levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) are maintained at low levels by various enzyme systems participating in the in vivo redox homeostasis. Therefore, oxidative stress can also be viewed as an imbalance between the prooxidants and antioxidants in the body. For the last two decades, oxidative stress has been one of the most burning topics among the biological researchers all over the world. Several reasons can be assigned to justify its importance: knowledge about reactive oxygen and nitrogen species production and metabolism; identification of biomarkers for oxidative damage; evidence relating manifestation of chronic and some acute health problems to oxidative stress; identification of various dietary antioxidants present in plant foods as bioactive molecules; and so on. This review discusses the importance of oxidative stress in the body growth and development as well as proteomic and genomic evidences of its relationship with disease development, incidence of malignancies and autoimmune disorders, increased susceptibility to bacterial, viral, and parasitic diseases, and an interplay with prooxidants and antioxidants for maintaining a sound health, which would be helpful in enhancing the knowledge of any biochemist, pathophysiologist, or medical personnel regarding this important issue.
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            Efficacy of berberine in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

            Berberine has been shown to regulate glucose and lipid metabolism in vitro and in vivo. This pilot study was to determine the efficacy and safety of berberine in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus patients. In study A, 36 adults with newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes mellitus were randomly assigned to treatment with berberine or metformin (0.5 g 3 times a day) in a 3-month trial. The hypoglycemic effect of berberine was similar to that of metformin. Significant decreases in hemoglobin A1c (from 9.5%+/-0.5% to 7.5%+/-0.4%, P<.01), fasting blood glucose (from 10.6+/-0.9 mmol/L to 6.9+/-0.5 mmol/L, P<.01), postprandial blood glucose (from 19.8+/-1.7 to 11.1+/-0.9 mmol/L, P<.01), and plasma triglycerides (from 1.13+/-0.13 to 0.89+/-0.03 mmol/L, P<.05) were observed in the berberine group. In study B, 48 adults with poorly controlled type 2 diabetes mellitus were treated supplemented with berberine in a 3-month trial. Berberine acted by lowering fasting blood glucose and postprandial blood glucose from 1 week to the end of the trial. Hemoglobin A1c decreased from 8.1%+/-0.2% to 7.3%+/-0.3% (P<.001). Fasting plasma insulin and homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance index were reduced by 28.1% and 44.7% (P<.001), respectively. Total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol were decreased significantly as well. During the trial, 20 (34.5%) patients experienced transient gastrointestinal adverse effects. Functional liver or kidney damages were not observed for all patients. In conclusion, this pilot study indicates that berberine is a potent oral hypoglycemic agent with beneficial effects on lipid metabolism.
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              Natural medicines used in the traditional Chinese medical system for therapy of diabetes mellitus.

              The rapidly increasing diabetes mellitus is becoming a serious threat to mankind health in all parts of the world. The control and treatment of diabetes and its complications mainly depend on the chemical or biochemical agents, but the fact is that it has never been reported that someone had recovered totally from diabetes. With the distinctive traditional medical opinions and natural medicines mainly originated in herbs, the traditional Chinese medicine performed a good clinical practice and is showing a bright future in the therapy of diabetes mellitus and its complications. Based on a large number of chemical and pharmacological research work, numerous bioactive compounds have been found in Chinese medicinal plants for diabetes. The present paper reviews 86 natural medicines with regards to their origin, anti-diabetic active principles and/or pharmacological test results, which are commonly used in the traditional Chinese medical system and have demonstrated experimental or/and clinical anti-diabetic effectiveness. Among these natural medicines, 82 originate from plants and 4 from animals or insects, which covers 45 families. It is strongly significant to pay close attention to traditional Chinese medical therapeutics and natural medicines for treatment of diabetes mellitus and its complications. Copyright 2004 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                Front Pharmacol
                Front Pharmacol
                Front. Pharmacol.
                Frontiers in Pharmacology
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                1663-9812
                21 August 2018
                2018
                : 9
                : 557
                Affiliations
                [1] 1Department of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Clinical Pharmacology, “Iuliu Hatieganu” University of Medicine and Pharmacy , Cluj-Napoca, Romania
                [2] 2Department of Pharmaceutical Botany, “Iuliu Hatieganu” University of Medicine and Pharmacy , Cluj-Napoca, Romania
                [3] 3Department of Environmental Sciences, Universidad de Santiago de Chile , Santiago de Chile, Chile
                Author notes

                Edited by: Anna Karolina Kiss, Medical University of Warsaw, Poland

                Reviewed by: Pinarosa Avato, Università degli Studi di Bari Aldo Moro, Italy; Sylwia Zielinska, Wroclaw Medical University, Poland

                *Correspondence: Andrei Mocan mocan.andrei@ 123456umfcluj.ro

                This article was submitted to Ethnopharmacology, a section of the journal Frontiers in Pharmacology

                Article
                10.3389/fphar.2018.00557
                6111450
                30186157
                d166da7a-d530-40d8-98ff-8b8885e4266a
                Copyright © 2018 Neag, Mocan, Echeverría, Pop, Bocsan, Crişan and Buzoianu.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                History
                : 21 December 2017
                : 09 May 2018
                Page count
                Figures: 3, Tables: 3, Equations: 0, References: 388, Pages: 30, Words: 22205
                Categories
                Pharmacology
                Review

                Pharmacology & Pharmaceutical medicine
                berberine,botanical occurrence,traditional uses,extraction methods,biological activities

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